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Thursday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles will mess with Texas

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There’s little to cheer for about the Orioles this year, except how they keep beating the Yankees. Today’s stuff: O’Day reflects on his time here, Buck on the new guys, and a weird science experiment.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees
Sometimes, baseball is a very silly game.
Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, friends.

Another day has dawned with the Orioles in last place in the American League East. They now trail the division-leading Red Sox by 41.5 games and they trail even the fourth place Blue Jays by 15.5 games. Hey, they’ve made up two games against the Jays in the last ten. That march up the standings is happening!

Well, probably not. The Orioles continue to have the worst record in MLB. With the Royals beating the White Sox on Wednesday night, the Orioles remain 1.5 games behind Kansas City for the worst record in the league. Of course, if you would rather look at it as the race for the #1 draft pick, then the Orioles are 1.5 games ahead of the Royals even after having won four of their past five games.

In their 108th game in 1988, the Orioles were beaten by the Brewers, 3-1, in the second game of a doubleheader. Although future Hall of Famer Eddie Murray had three hits, the rest of the team had just three hits combined and Mike Morgan’s complete game with three earned runs just wasn’t enough. With this loss, their record fell to 36-72.

The 2018 O’s are now two games worse than the 1988 O’s through as many games, and with their pace of 50 wins if you round to the nearest whole number, are lined up to win four fewer teams than that woeful squad.

Things are a tiny bit happier today because the Orioles beat the Yankees yesterday. It is a great source of delight that this keeps happening this season. If you missed the game, check out my recap of the lovely totals, and don’t forget to vote for your choice in the Most Birdland Player poll.

The post-trade era rolls on in Texas today with the start of a four-game series. Jonathan Villar is supposed to join the Orioles there and make a return from the disabled list. Hopefully, Cedric Mullins will soon join them. The guy homered again in Norfolk last night, if you didn’t hear, and as Dan Duquette told the MASN booth on Tuesday, the outfield defense needs to improve immediately.

The Rangers aren’t as bad as the Orioles, but they aren’t very good, either, so it’ll be interesting to see how the O’s do in these games. Maybe the O’s can surprise us and grab a couple of wins.

Around the blogO’sphere

Adam Jones wouldn’t let the Orioles trade him, is awesome (Deadspin)
Though Jones not stepping aside for the rebuild is a bit of a setback for the Orioles, it is worth remembering the thesis of this Deadspin article: He’s still the best.

One for the future: Evaluating Orioles prospect DJ Stewart (Baltimore Sun)
My dream trade deadline deal would have been one where the O’s ate some salary and dealt Mark Trumbo so that Trey Mancini could DH and DJ Stewart could get an audition in left field. Alas.

Meet the Orioyals: Could we combine MLB’s worst teams into a winner? (The Ringer)
When Ben Lindbergh wants to run a mad science experiment involving the Orioles, it’s generally going to be a must-read.

Ranking the prospects traded at the deadline (Fangraphs)
The Fangraphs duo sees some potential in a good number of players the O’s got back in these trades. Whether that potential is ever enough to build a good O’s team around...

Brewers add thump to lineup with Schoop (ESPN)
Keith Law with his thoughts on the prospects the Orioles received from the Brewers for Jonathan Schoop.

Darren O’Day grateful for time spent with O’s (Orioles.com)
And I am grateful for Darren O’Day’s time spent with the Orioles.

Showalter on roster additions, O’Day’s departure, and more (School of Roch)
More than anybody else the O’s traded, it sounds like O’Day was a glue kind of piece - not that he’s been consistently healthy and around since signing his free agent contract with the Orioles.

Birthdays and anniversaries

There are two former Orioles with birthdays today. They are: 2016 two-gamer Parker Bridwell, and 1999/2003-04 pitcher Matt Riley.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: early Washington D.C. architect Pierre Charles L’Enfant (1754), Statue of Liberty designer Frederic Auguste Bartholdi (1834), Warner Bros. co-founder Jack Warner (1892), Lawrence of Arabia actor Peter O’Toole (1932), novelist Isabel Allende (1942), Crazy Ex-Girlfriend co-creator Aline Brosh McKenna (1967), and movie man Kevin Smith (1970).

On this day in history...

In 216 BC, Hannibal’s Carthaginians defeated a superior Roman force in the Battle of Cannae, to this day considered one of the great tactical feats in military history.

In 1798 AD, British and French fleets engaged in the Battle of the Nile. The two sides were numerically even but the battle was won decisively by the British under Sir (later Lord) Horatio Nelson, whose statue for later heroics watches over London to this day.

In 1943, an American torpedo boat, PT-109, was rammed and sunk by a Japanese destroyer. This went on to become a significant bit of American history because the boat’s commander was future president John F. Kennedy. Eleven of the thirteen crew survived the collision, for which Kennedy is credited.

In 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait, an action which Saddam Hussein incorrectly believed would provoke no international military response.

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And that’s the way it is in Birdland on August 2 - or at least, until something happens later when the Orioles play the Rangers. Have a safe Thursday. Go O’s!