There are now 65 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day. This number was worn most recently by mulleted reliever Chaz Roe. That’s not much more than two months away. Baseball will be back before we know it.
Fake baseball will be back even sooner. Pitchers and catchers report to mark the start of spring training in just 21 days from now. Some will get there earlier still. Although additions and changes can still be made during spring training, it’s going to feel a whole lot like the team that reports to Sarasota is pretty much going to be the team that takes the field in Baltimore at the end of March.
At present, this realization is not a heartening one. It has not been for quite some time. Yet it seems the Orioles are determined to carry on with their present course all the same.
There was one bit of baseball news on Monday, although it had nothing to do with the Orioles. The Giants signed outfielder Austin Jackson to a two-year contract worth just $6 million. The soon-to-be 31-year-old outfielder is coming off of a season where he batted .318/.387/.482 over 85 games.
We never heard much about the Orioles and Jackson because he's right handed and, as we'll see in today's links, the Orioles want a lefty-batting outfielder. If they sign someone who isn't good, this will be one of those frustrating moments, looking back.
Around the blogO’sphere
Can Santander's defense keep him in majors? (School of Roch)
One gets the sense, reading this article, that recent Rule 5 picks are one of those areas where Buck Showalter and Dan Duquette have some disagreement.
The minor league ball is such a drag (Fangraphs)
Using numbers and Trey Mancini to offer another data point that the MLB balls have probably been juiced.
Not as key as upgrading the rotation, but a left-handed-hitting outfield bat is a must (Baltimore Baseball)
I am ever aware that the “Must have a lefty!” attitude is also what brought Wade Miley to the Orioles, and thus nervous when I see headlines like this.
A look at another top 10 Orioles prospects list (Steve Melewski)
Melewski critiques the Baseball Prospectus top 10 Orioles prospects.
Players don't become terrible at 30 (Fangraphs)
At Fangraphs, Craig Edwards makes the case that the early 30s aren’t necessarily such a bad bet. This is little consolation for the Orioles, who have made bad bets on the early 30s of Chris Davis and Mark Trumbo.
Birthdays and anniversaries
In 2010, the Orioles signed Miguel Tejada for the second time, this time for just one year and $6 million. He was eight years older than he had been when the Orioles signed him for the first time six years previously.
A few former Orioles have birthdays today. They are: 2014 three-gamer Cord Phelps, 1997-98 reserve Charlie Greene, 1993/95 outfielder Sherman Obando, 1990 short-timer and no relation to yours truly Marty Brown, and the late Chico Carrasquel of the 1959 Orioles.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: prominent Declaration of Independence signer John Hancock (1737), impressionist painter Edouard Manet (1832), longtime Broadway actress Chita Rivera (1933), noted airplane water lander Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger (1951), and actress Tiffani Thiessen (1974).
On this day in history...
In 971, the Song dynasty moved closer towards its consolidation of China into one kingdom by defeating a war elephant corps belonging to their rivals, Southern Han, using crossbows.
In 1789, what’s now known as Georgetown University was founded in what was then Georgetown, Maryland.
In 1849, Elizabeth Blackwell received an M.D. from Geneva Medical College in New York, making her the first female doctor in the United States.
In 1960, the two-man submersible USS Trieste reached Challenger Deep in the Marianas Trench, the deepest point known in Earth’s oceans, becoming the first ship to ever do so.
In 1964, upon ratification by South Dakota, the Twenty-fourth Amendment, which bans poll taxes, took effect. Maryland was the sixth state to ratify the amendment, nearly a year prior.
And that’s the way it is in Birdland on January 23 - or at least, unless something happens later, which with the way the offseason is going, it probably won’t. Have a safe Tuesday.