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Monday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are headed out west

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The Orioles got swept over the weekend and now the west coast awaits. Don’t stay up too late!

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MLB: Boston Red Sox at Baltimore Orioles Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, friends.

If you’re tired of losing, the Orioles are about to give you a vacation of sorts. They’re headed out to the west coast and will have four of their next five games starting in the 10:00 hour for those of us here in the east. It starts tonight in Oakland at 10:07. If the games stink later on, which given the O’s bullpen performance to date is most likely, you can turn them off and go to bed and not have to see the rest of it.

The Orioles were predictably disappointing on Father’s Day as they wrapped up their series with the Red Sox with a 10 inning, 8-6 loss. Considering it was 3-3 headed into extra innings, things got weird. Check out Tyler Young’s recap of the game for the not-so-lovely totals, because despite the final score, the game was not without its fun moments for O’s fans.

After getting their butts swept by the Red Sox this weekend, the Orioles are now 21-50 for the 2019 season. It’s pretty bad! They’re now on pace to win 48 games on the season, a bare one win better than the 2018 team mustered. Also pretty bad. Through 71 games, last year’s losers were 20-51, so the 2019 O’s are one win better at this moment as well.

On the topic of things that are pretty bad, there’s also the ongoing thing of Orioles pitchers giving up home runs. They coughed up two more homers yesterday, “they” specifically being Mychal Givens, who both gave up Marco Hernandez’s first home run of the season to blow the save in the ninth and then gave up another homer to Rafael Devers in the tenth to put the O’s in the hole.

After those two homers, the O’s have surrendered 141 home runs in 71 games. That works out to a pace of 322 home runs allowed over a full season, significantly beyond the 258 home runs allowed by the 2016 Reds. However, with 91 games left to play, the O’s can still avoid history, if they only allow about one home run per game the rest of the way. It could be done!

The weekend’s losing still leaves the Orioles looking for their first series win since April 22-24, and without victories in consecutive games since winning on May 4 and then May 6. Sometimes it’s hard to believe they could really be this bad... at least until you see them pitch.

There have been 149 days since Mike Mussina was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Orioles have not yet announced any plans to erect his statue or retire his jersey number.

Around the blogO’sphere

Mark Trumbo: I never killed the postgame, pie-smashing celebration by the Orioles (The Athletic)
This was legitimately the biggest Orioles news development over the weekend, so I wanted to make sure you didn’t miss it.

Yusniel Diaz’s homers highlight progress at the plate (Baltimore Sun)
The first couple of months of the season included injury and some struggles for the best prospect the Orioles got last July. He may be starting to turn things around.

Orioles could use opener in Oakland (School of Roch)
Desperation may be driving the Orioles in a radical direction, at least for a little while. David Hess got sent down to Norfolk also, so he won’t be a part of the pitching picture for at least ten days, unless there’s an injury.

As losses mount, more mistakes are showing up (Steve Melewski)
These sorts of things doomed the Orioles on Friday and Saturday. On Sunday it was really just the bullpen not being good enough.

Hunter Harvey makes first career relief appearance to control innings, try out new role (Baltimore Sun)
Is this the future for Harvey? After all that he’s been through, finding his way into MLB as a reliever would still be a great outcome for him. Have you heard his dad used to be a big league reliever too?

Birthdays and anniversaries

One lone former Oriole was born on this day: Dave Pope, a reserve outfielder for the 1955-56 O’s. He passed away in 1999 at the age of 78.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: composer Igor Stravinsky (1882), artist M.C. Escher (1898), musician Barry Manilow (1943), cycling legend Eddy Merckx (1945), Dead Kennedys singer Jello Biafra (1958), actor Greg Kinnear (1963), and tennis player Venus Williams (1980).

On this day in history...

In 1462, Wallachian ruler Vlad the Impaler (or Vlad Dracula) attacked Ottoman sultan Mehmet II in a night-time raid at Targoviste. After retreating from the attack, Mehmet found 23,844 of his Turks impaled.

In 1631, Mughal empress Mumtaz Mahal died in childbirth. Her husband the emperor, Shah Jahan I, spent the next 17 years building a mausolem, which you could still visit today: The Taj Mahal.

In 1885, the Statue of Liberty arrived in the harbor in New York City.

In 1972, five men were arrested for burgling the offices of the Democratic National Committee in the Watergate in Washington, DC.

In 1991, South Africa’s Parliament repealed the Population Registration Act, the pillar of the apartheid regime which required racial classification for all South Africans at birth.

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And that’s the way it is in Birdland on June 17 - or at least, until something happens later when the Orioles play the Athletics. Have a safe Monday. Go O’s!