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Thursday Bird Droppings: Where no one thinks the Orioles will sign free agents

Hot stove season won’t be very hot in Baltimore. That’s no different from the Dan Duquette years. It’s just that there’s a plan now.

Seattle Mariners v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

There are now 140 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day 2020. The only thing on the baseball calendar today is that Silver Slugger award winners will be announced. Something tells me that there won’t be any O’s on that list. On Monday, we’ll find out whether John Means wins the AL Rookie of the Year award.

Unless someone you really care about gets traded, this isn’t going to be much of an active offseason for the O’s. The team is does still need to settle on several new members of a coaching staff, with bullpen coach, assistant hitting coach, and first base coach still up in the air.

That could take a while. The Orioles didn’t announce coaches for the 2019 season until January 23 of this year. With them already beginning the offseason with both a general manager and manager this time around, it probably shouldn’t take that long to hire people for their openings.

Even once they hire somebody for these positions, even if they hire the perfect person for each one, none of us will be likely to say, “I’m so glad they’re on the coaching staff!” Fans just aren’t really in a place to know who’s good and who’s not, except for every now and again if the third base coach sends someone home who should not have been sent.

Around the blogO’sphere

This edition of links is a blinking neon sign for anyone who’s yet to accept that the Orioles will do nothing significant in free agency this offseason.

The price of pitching again puts Orioles in bind (School of Roch)
In which Roch figures “one year, $6 million” is too much for the Orioles to pay to Ivan Nova. I don’t even want Ivan Nova, it’s just that if even the $6 million guys are out, nothing will happen. That’s not bad for where the Orioles are right now. It is, however, boring.

Here’s how the O’s Opening Day roster might look (
Much is depressing here, including, for me, Dwight Smith Jr. as an outfield lock. Of interest, Joe Trezza says that the Orioles hope Keegan Akin earns a rotation spot in spring training. That would be something fun for the start of the season for me.

How the Orioles offseason moves so far can help their development goals in 2020 (Baltimore Sun)
Cycling through the scrubs so you don’t rush any prospects that you actually care about is not a bad plan. But when the result of the plan is Aaron Brooks in the rotation, the good plan doesn’t feel very good for Orioles fans in the moment.

Projecting where the Orioles’ top prospects will start in 2020 - Part 1 (Baltimore Baseball)
I don’t know that anyone needs a multi-part projection of this sort, but that’s what we’re getting, so enjoy it. You may sense a theme, which is that everyone who was good at a level in 2019 is going to move up in 2020.

Being this early into the free agency period has not stopped there from being a little early dustup between labor and management. Comments made by Braves GM Alex Anthopolous in advance of next week’s general manager meetings have ruffled the feathers of the players union, with the union feeling like they signal collusion between clubs to keep free agent prices down.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

Today in 1989, Gregg Olson won the AL Rookie of the Year award after a rookie season where he posted a 1.69 ERA in 85 innings of relief, with 27 saves. Among the other rookies Olson beat out was Ken Griffey Jr. Olson is still the most recent Orioles winner.

There are a few former Orioles who were born on this day. They are: 2015-16 outfielder Dariel Alvarez, 2006 pitcher Kris Benson, and the late Bob Hale, 1955-59 reserve first baseman.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: explorer James Cook (1728), chemist/physicist Marie Curie (1867), novelist/philosopher Albert Camus (1913), musician Joni Mitchell (1943), author Guy Gavriel Kay (1954), Baltimore-born boxing champion Hasim Rahman (1972), and actor Adam DeVine (1983).

On this day in history...

In 1492, a meteorite landed in a wheat field near Ensisheim in the Alsace region of France. This is the oldest meteorite whose impact date is known precisely.

In 1811, future President William Henry Harrison led a militia to victory over Tecumseh’s confederacy in the Battle of Tippecanoe.

In 1908, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid were killed in a shootout with authorities in Bolivia, though there were people who insisted Cassidy survived in hiding until 1937.

In 1916, Jeannette Rankin became the first woman to be elected to Congress, winning election to the US House from Montana. Rankin served from 1917-19 and later 1941-43. She was one of 50 House members who opposed declaring war on Germany in 1917 and the only one to vote against declaring war on Japan in 1941, saying, “As a woman I can’t go to war, and I refuse to send anyone else.”

In 1989, Douglas Wilder was elected governor of Virginia, making him the first elected African American governor in US history.


And that’s the way it is in Birdland on November 7 - or at least, unless something happens later. Have a safe Thursday.