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Earlier this week the Baltimore Orioles made national headlines, but not because their up-and-coming team is in first place and has the American League's best record. Lead play-by-play man Kevin Brown was removed from MASN broadcasts because, per The Athletic, he cited the O's poor record against the Tampa Bay Rays in recent seasons during the July 23 telecast.

Brown's removal drew the ire of broadcasters around the league -- the Orioles were called out during live games many times this week -- and fans at Camden Yards chanted "Free Kevin Brown!" the last few nights. On Friday, Brown broke his silence and about being removed from O's broadcasts. Here's what he said:

O's fans – I'm a storyteller. And never want to be a part of the story. The most compelling story in baseball right now is the story of the league-leading Baltimore Orioles – the best, most exciting young team in the American League.

Unfortunately, recent media reports have mischaracterized my relationship with my adopted hometown Orioles. The fact is that I have a wonderful relationship with the organization, and our ownership and front office has fully supported me since 2019 when I first came aboard.

I ask that everyone disregard the distracting noise of the past few days. I have worked closely with O's SVP Greg Bader for the past four years, and John Angelos and I have a solid dialogue based on mutual respect. We are all good here in Birdland!

I am proud to be an Oriole and call Baltimore home, and there is no place in baseball I'd rather be now and for the long haul. Go O's!

It should be noted Baltimore's public relations staff included the note about the O's record against the Rays in their daily game notes and MASN showed a graphic on the broadcast. Brown's stating of the facts -- with little additional commentary -- did not sit well with ownership, who believed it "made them look cheap," according to The Athletic.

Brown, who started covering the Orioles as a radio broadcaster in 2019 before moving into the MASN television booth in 2021, is expected to resume calling Baltimore's games Friday. The O's begin a three-city, nine-game, 10-day West Coast trip against the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park on Friday.

Baltimore sits atop the AL East at 71-44. They are 22-9 in their last 31 games.