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Monday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are almost eliminated

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After getting their butts kicked on Sunday, the Orioles are on the verge of being officially eliminated. Today’s stuff: Trumbo’s bum knee, Rickard’s surprise demotion, and more.

Baltimore Orioles v Cleveland Indians Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

Another day has dawned with the Orioles in last place in the American League East. They trail the division-leading Red Sox by a comical 50.5 games and they’re 18 games behind even the fourth place Blue Jays. What’s more, today could prove to be the day that the O’s get officially eliminated from the wild card race, as an O’s loss today plus an Athletics win against the Rangers would eliminate the O’s.

If you weren’t watching the O’s as they got drubbed by the Indians on Sunday, that’s probably better for you. Be sure to check out Ben Hansford’s recap for the not-so-lovely totals, though, including poor Yefry Ramirez getting shelled with an assist from why-is-this-guy-here reliever Sean Gilmartin.

In the quest to avoid the worst record in MLB, or the quest to get the #1 pick in next June’s draft, the O’s and Royals kept pace with one another on Sunday. The Royals were also losers, falling to the White Sox, 7-6, after having a 6-0 lead. These are two bad baseball teams. For now, the Orioles are one game up for the #1 draft pick next year.

Back in 1988, the Orioles were also losers in their 124th game. They were beaten by the Mariners, 7-3. That dropped their record to 42-82. The 2018 Orioles through the same number of games are five games worse than the 1988 O’s were - which is impressive and horrible considering that the ‘88 squad spotted the field 21 losses coming right out of the gate.

The 2018 Orioles are now on pace to win just 48 games, if you round to the nearest whole number. That is six games fewer than those disastrous 1988 Orioles managed to win. This is a bad baseball team, you guys. They can peel back their deficit to fourth place, or fall farther into the cellar, with a series against the Blue Jays that begins in Toronto tonight.

Around the blogO’sphere

Mark Trumbo likely headed for DL stint (Orioles.com)
After playing through a knee injury over the last week that was so severe that MASN broadcasters repeatedly commented on how Trumbo looked hobbled, he seems to be headed for the disabled list.

Rickard optioned to Norfolk (School of Roch)
Adam Jones is returning from the bereavement list today, but Mark Trumbo going to the DL covers that roster spot. Joey Rickard has been optioned nonetheless, and it seems freshly-claimed 28-year-old outfielder John Andreoli will join the team. If Trumbo’s hitting the DL and opening up a chance for three real outfielders in the outfield, I’d rather see one of the O’s minor leaguers than some jabroni they got on waivers two days ago. In keeping with his standard pattern, Dan Duquette did not consult me before making this decision.

Orioles spend another weekend minding gap between club and class of league in Cleveland (Baltimore Sun)
Good teams are good. The Orioles are not.

Dean Jones Report: Updated rankings account for new faces in O’s minors (Baltimore Baseball)
A mid-August update to “Dean’s Dozen” has shaken up the rankings as Jones adds the new prospects from the July trades into his system outlook. Things are going better for some than others.

Birthdays and anniversaries

In 1960, during a doubleheader against the Red Sox, the Orioles issued the 2,000th walk of Ted Williams’s career. At the time, he and Babe Ruth were the only players to reach that number for their careers. They’ve since been joined by Rickey Henderson and Barry Bonds. The active walks leader for batters is Albert Pujols, with 1,272. That’s good for 50th place.

There are two former Orioles with birthdays today. They are: 1996-2001 outfielder Eugene Kingsale, and the late George Zuverink, a reliever for the 1955-59 Orioles.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: 23rd president Benjamin Harrison (1833), Cthulhu creator H.P. Lovecraft (1890), singer-songwriter/actor Isaac Hayes (1942), Chicago (the band) founder and trombonist James Pankow (1947), TV weatherman Al Roker (1954), rapper KRS-One (1964), and actress/singer-songwriter Demi Lovato (1992).

On this day in history...

In 636, the Byzantine Empire was defeated in the Battle of Yarmouk by Khalid ibn al-Walid’s Arab invaders. The battle resulted in the Empire losing control of the Levant, and marked the first of a wave of Arab conquests.

In 1882, Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture was debuted in a performance in Moscow, Russia. Despite this origin of the song, it remains popular as an accompaniment to Fourth of July fireworks in America to this day.

In 1940, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill gave one of his famous speeches of World War II, in which he praised the desperate defense by the Royal Air Force in the Battle of Britain. The speech is known for its most iconic line: “Never was so much owed by so many to so few.”

In 1977, NASA launched the Voyager 2 spacecraft - actually 16 days earlier than Voyager 1. This is the only craft that has ever visited Uranus or Neptune. Its last planetary encounter was in 1989, but it’s still in contact with Earth as it heads towards interstellar space.

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And that’s the way it is in Birdland on August 20 - or at least, until something happens later when the Orioles play the Blue Jays. Have a safe Monday. Go O’s!