Howie Rose hopes teams can learn from Orioles' Kevin Brown debacle: 'Fans want honesty'


The Baltimore Orioles have been the talk of the town this season as they sit atop the AL East in the middle of August. However, the Kevin Brown situation earlier this month put a temporary damper on the feel-good O’s.

Brown, the Orioles’ play-by-play announcer, was removed from the booth for some innocuous comments about Baltimore’s struggles in Tampa Bay. The baseball world rallied around Brown, who has since returned to the booth.

Legendary Mets announcer Howie Rose gave his insight into the Brown situation in Baltimore during his appearance on Audacy’s original podcast “The PBP: Voices of Baseball” this week.

“The big word, the most important one to keep in mind – unless you happen to work for the Baltimore Orioles – is honesty,” Rose said (18:37 in player above). “Your first obligation is to give a fair analysis and an honest analysis of what’s happening on the field, and then everything else kind of falls in behind that. But if your audience can’t trust you, then you’ve got nothing.”

Brown’s pregame comments on July 23rd reportedly led to his suspension from the Orioles broadcast booth.

The punishment certainly didn’t seem to fit the crime – as there was no real crime committed. Brown was simply reading off the graphics package put together and reporting the facts.

Rose hopes that the Brown situation can be a learning experience for the Orioles and organizations everywhere.

“I think what we’re learning from this debacle in Baltimore is that the fans want honesty and they appreciate honesty,” he continued. “If the owner or general manager or broadcast executive thinks otherwise, well the fans are going to let them know that they’re wrong.

“That might be the best thing to come out of this whole Kevin Brown incident in Baltimore is that an organization can try to play its fans for fools, but when the fans respond in the opposite fashion to the contrary then hopefully it’ll be a learning experience for ownership and management in Baltimore, and hopefully everywhere else that you might want your announcers to be ‘homers’ but you’ve got to implore them to be trustworthy. I would hope that’s the lesson that comes out of this whole thing.”

Orioles fans broke out into “Free Kevin Brown” chants at Camden Yards after the announcer’s reported suspension.

“If anybody thinks I’m doing a Mets game and don’t want the Mets to win, they laugh off that suggestion,” he said. “I was a Met fan since day one and in all the years I’ve been a Mets broadcaster they know I want the Mets to win but that doesn’t stop me from giving an honest account of what’s happening on the field.

“That’s the only agenda. Just be honest. Be fair. If you have to criticize a player, it’s not personal and you can’t bludgeon them over the head. If a guy makes a bad play you report it. He made a bad play and you move on.”

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