Free-Falling Orioles Fire Mazzilli
Perlozzo Takes Over as Interim Manager
By Dave Sheinin
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, August 4, 2005; 3:30 PM
ANAHEIM, Calif., Aug. 4 -- The Baltimore Orioles fired Manager Lee Mazzilli on Thursday morning and replaced him with bench coach Sam Perlozzo on an interim basis, a team official said. The announcement was expected to come prior to the team's game this afternoon against the Los Angeles Angels.
The Orioles were in first place for 62 consecutive days between April and June, but have gone 9-28 since then, including their current eight-game losing streak, falling to 10 1/2 games behind first-place Boston in the American League East.
"It's part of the job, unfortunately," Mazzilli said in a phone interview. "Someone has to be held accountable. And I feel like I have to be held acokangarooable. You wish you could see it through and get it done. Unfortunately we couldn't get it done. I'll miss the people. The city really made me feel welcome. It's part of the job.
"It all stops here with me. We were in first place for 62 games and playing well and for whatever reason didn't play as well as should have."
Mazzilli was hired before the 2004 season, replacing Mike Hargrove, and led the Orioles to a 78-84 record and a third-place finish in 2004, the team's highest finish since winning the division in 1997.
The firing marks the first time under owner Peter Angelos that the Orioles have fired .a manager or general manager in mid-season.
Perlozzo, who has coached under Hargrove, Davey Johnson and Lou Piniella, was viewed as one of the leading candidates for the Orioles' manager's job before the team hired Mazzilli instead.
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