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Thursday Bird Droppings: The World Series off day edition

There is no baseball today, unless you count the Arizona Fall League, where Dean Kremer and Alex Wells have pitched great.

Seattle Mariners v Baltimore Orioles
Some time this beautiful stadium will host a World Series. Probably not next year.
Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

There are now 154 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day 2020. Today is an off day for the World Series as the two teams travel from Houston to the District of Columbia before things resume on Friday night. You will have to find something other than baseball to entertain you tonight. If you’ve got some TV binging to do on the off night, feel free to share in the comments below what you’re watching.

With the way the first couple of games have gone, one must wonder whether the series will even make it back to Houston. That is a crummy outcome for me, for reasons that begin and end with Baltimore provincialism. Were they the Washington State Nationals rather than in DC, they would probably be the team I’d like to see win.

Whether I like it or not, things don’t look great for the Astros. They’ve now lost two games, at home, with their best pitchers starting, and will have to steal games on the road with lesser pitchers and with no DH. It’s do-able. Weird things can happen over any small number of baseball games. That’s what the Astros are left clinging to, that something weird might happen. If things stay normal, they’re toast.

Truly dedicated baseball junkies may satisfy their craving by trying to follow one of the last few games of the Arizona Fall League season. The Orioles prospects on the Surprise Saguaros will play one more game tonight and then a game tomorrow afternoon. Since their team was good over the last month, they’ll be playing in the championship game on Saturday night as well.

Surprise has done well in part because of a couple of Orioles pitching prospects who have done well there. Alex Wells has now appeared in nine games and has given up just one run over 15.2 innings while posting a 15/2 strikeout to walk ratio. Dean Kremer has pitched in six games and sports a 2.37 ERA and 0.89 WHIP over 19 innings. He has struck out 23 batters.

Wells and Kremer are probably ticketed for Triple-A Norfolk to start next season. The players they face there will likely be a bit more advanced, on average, than the players they’ve been facing in Arizona. More challenges await. Still, it’s interesting that they’ve had some good outings. Hopefully they’re able to build on this starting in February and heading on into the next regular season.

Around the blogO’sphere

Looking at the pitch mix for the O’s and the World Series teams (Steve Melewski)
Nobody threw a smaller percentage of fastballs than the Astros this season. I wonder if the Orioles will head in that direction? Melewski notes they threw 54.9% fastballs in 2019, which was sixth-most in MLB.

As Orioles wait for Adley Rutschman, last year’s catchers try to stick around (Baltimore Baseball)
I like their chances to get at least one more season, although not so much more than that.

Exploring Martin’s role in 2020 (
Joe Trezza hit the inbox, covering in part the Orioles lack of other shortstop options if they send Richie Martin to Norfolk.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

There are a few former Orioles with birthdays today. They are: 2012 infielder Omar Quintanilla, 1991-99 pitcher Arthur Rhodes, and Baltimore’s own Dave Johnson of the 1989-91 clubs and currently of the Orioles radio broadcast team.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: Niagara Falls stuntwoman Annie Edson Taylor (1838), musician The Big Bopper (1930), actor F. Murray Abraham (1939), and Baltimore Colts linebacker Stan White (1949).

On this day in history...

In 1360, England and France signed the Treaty of Bretigny, which brought nine years of peace before the Hundred Years War (which was actually 116 years) resumed.

In 1648, most of the European powers concluded the Peace of Westphalia, which ended both the Thirty Years War and Eighty Years War, each of which really were 30 and 80 years.

In 1929, it was Black Thursday on the New York Stock Exchange, or the beginning of the Wall Street Crash, one of the big factors in the leadup to the Great Depression.

In 2002, the D.C. Beltway snipers were arrested at a rest stop on I-70, ending their multi-state killing spree that saw them murder 17 people and injure another 10 dating back to that February.


And that’s the way it is in Birdland on October 24 - or at least, until something happens later. Have a safe Thursday.