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Thursday Bird Droppings: The one year since Buck and Dan edition

A year ago today, the Orioles moved on from both Buck Showalter and Dan Duquette. It’s been a busy year.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Baltimore Orioles Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, friends.

There are now 175 days remaining until the next Orioles game. For today, at least, there will be some baseball to possibly entertain us, with both National League Division Series matchups getting underway. The Braves host the Cardinals at an oddly specific 5:02 start time, while the Dodgers play at home against the Nationals starting at 8:37. Both will air on TBS.

Yesterday night’s baseball had the American League wild card teams in the spotlight. The Rays wiped out the Athletics in Oakland by a 5-1 score. This was the ninth straight winner-take-all postseason game that the A’s had lost, with their last such win coming in Game 7 of the 1973 World Series.

The A’s out-hit the Rays, but four of the seven hits they gave up were dingers, including two by Cuban first baseman Yandy Diaz, and that was that for the A’s. The last lines of the Moneyball movie are still true: Billy is still trying to win the last game of the season.

We do have some Orioles news today, although it’s not news that has much to do with the fortunes of the team on the field. The team announced a few new business-side promotions and hires.

Perhaps one of them will be able to crack the code of how to make sure that the team’s shipment of the most popular giveaway item for the year, for which ticket prices are jacked up to the maximum, so that it does not result in anyone wanting an XL shirt receiving a voucher that can to be redeemed only during normal business hours from the start of October through Christmas. This is what happened to the 2019 Hawaiian shirt giveaway.

Failing that, perhaps the process of purchasing and receiving concessions can be made less often as ridiculous as it can be presently. Or at least perhaps they can stop charging more for a soft pretzel by selling only “pretzel with cheese” rather than having a cheaper, pretzel-only option available.

Do you have any Camden Yards experience gripes that you hope can be resolved next season? Or for that matter, was there anything new this season that made you happy and you would like to see continue?

Around the blogO’sphere

Bundy on his season: “It was an up and down year” (School of Roch)
Bundy’s immediate reaction is that he was glad he gave up fewer home runs. He wasn’t the only one to be glad for his doing that. He was just about the only one who gave up fewer home runs.

Five questions for the Orioles this offseason (
It’s already not the first “five things” of the offseason and it surely will not be the last. Yes, one of the questions is what to do about Chris Davis.

How Richard Bleier and Mychal Givens used hard love and hype sessions to keep bullpen entertained (Baltimore Sun)
You’re not a bad person if this headline doesn’t immediately make you want o read the article, but we may not be able to be friends.

Orioles face a dilemma when it comes to Jonathan Villar (Baltimore Baseball)
There’s only a dilemma for anyone who thinks the Orioles might not want to pay a $7 million arbitration salary to Villar next season, a viewpoint that this article adopts but has no premises that make any sense to me.

Does manager Brandon Hyde get good grades for 2019? (Steve Melewski)
I think the fact that the Orioles players themselves seemed to not be feeling like their season was a complete miserable slog can be credited in a big way to the manager. In the 54 games they won, and in games they lost where they led, and even sometimes in games where they trailed, they were all celebrating their own and one another’s positive accomplishments.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

Today in 2014, Delmon Young hit The Double on the way to a 7-6 Orioles victory over the Tigers in Game 2 of the ALDS. Those of us who were not there to witness it personally have to select a different “best Camden Yards moment.”

One year ago today, the Orioles made it official that they would not be retaining either Buck Showalter or Dan Duquette. It’s been an eventful year since then, if not a winning one on the field at the big league level. Fortunately, Mike Elias makes it very easy to feel like the franchise is in good hands now. What’s been your favorite thing since his hire?

There are two former Orioles who were born on this day. They are: 2013 one-gamer Mike Belfiore, and 1997 short-timer Mike Johnson.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: writer Gore Vidal (1925), rock’n’roller Chubby Checker (1941), baseball Hall of Famers Dave Winfield (1951) and Dennis Eckersley (1954), blues guitar legend Stevie Ray Vaughan (1954), comic book man Rob Liefeld (1967), singer-songwriter Gwen Stefani (1969), actress Tessa Thompson (1983), and rapper ASAP Rocky (1988).

On this day in history...

In 42 BC, Mark Antony and Octavian’s armies fought in the Battle of Philippi against those of Caesar’s assassins, Cassius and Brutus. The action on today’s date saw the Triumvirate forces (Antony and Octavian) suffer twice as many killed as did Cassius and Brutus, but Cassius mistakenly believed after the battle that Brutus had been defeated and killed, so he committed suicide.

In 1789 AD, George Washington proclaimed a Thanksgiving Day. The holiday was held on and off until the same day in 1863, when under President Lincoln Thanksgiving became a federal holiday.

In 1952, the United Kingdom conducted Operation Hurricane, its first successful test of a nuclear weapon. At this time, it was the third country to become a nuclear power.

In 1990, Germany was reunified when the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) was officially abolished.


And that’s the way it is in Birdland on October 3 - or at least, unless something happens later. You never know when another waiver claim will strike. Have a safe Thursday.