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Wednesday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are on a seven-game skid

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Baltimore Orioles v Oakland Athletics Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Good morning, Birdland!

I understand why the Orioles signed Dan Straily. He is an experienced pitcher with a long enough track record to indicate that he knows how to get out major league hitters. The thought process behind the move was to get a guy who could eat a few innings and provide length as either a starter or bullpen option. In fact, I was even in agreement with the decision to sign Straily at the time.

But it has not worked out, and he gets worse each outing. In Tuesday night’s loss to the Athletics, the righty served up six runs on five hits, two walks, four strikeouts and three home runs. His ERA rose to 9.82 on the season. He has appeared in 14 games this season, and has left without allowing a run only once, June 12 against Toronto.

Typically, if a player is available to sign on April 5, there is a reason for it. And it’s not usually because he can help your team win a lot of games. We are finding that out the hard way.

Links & Notes

At least you’re not a Baltimore Orioles fan - USA Today
But wait...I am. Oh no.

Brett Anderson, Anthony Swarzak, and Jimmy Yacabonis Explain Their Signature Sliders - FanGraphs
Jimmy Yacabonis has had his struggles this season, but he does have a pretty nasty slider. It’s a pitch good enough to keep him in the bigs long term if he can piece the rest of his game together. He will certainly be given an opportunity on a team nearly devoid of any pitching talent.

Orioles replacing Alvarez in GCL (and other notes) - School of Roch
Roch covers a handful of burning questions you may have about the Orioles minor leagues and provides an injury update on outfielder Dwight Smith Jr.

J.J. Hardy’s tale of guitars, Southern rock and baseball - The Athletic
Technically, J.J. Hardy is not retired. He could sign a contract tomorrow, but that seems unlikely. Instead, he is turning into the Ron Swanson of Arizona, making things out of wood in anonymity. It feels like the exact type of thing you would have expected from the former Gold Glove winner.

Orioles birthdays and history

Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!

Logan Verrett, a former Rule 5 selection and relief pitcher for four games on the 2017 Orioles, turns 29 today. Val Majewski, an O’s outfielder for nine games in 2004, is 38. Willis Roberts, a pitcher for the O’s from 2001 through 2003, celebrates his 44th birthday. Butch Davis, an outfielder in Baltimore for 18 games between 1988 and ‘89, is 61 today. And, finally, happy 90th birthday to Don Ferrarese, a southpaw pitcher for the 1955-57 Orioles teams.

June 19 has been a pretty slow day for the Orioles historically, so here are a few events that have taken place on this day away from Birdland:

1943 - The NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers join to form one team for the season due to a player shortage cause by World War II.

1949 - The first NASCAR race is held at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

1978 - Garfield, the comic strip featuring a grumpy cat that loves lasagna, makes its debut.