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Friday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles get to face another division leader

The Orioles didn’t give up any home runs yesterday, since they had the day off. Today, the Astros await.

New York Yankees v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

Today is the first day of the rest of the 2019 Orioles season. Unlike just about every day that has gone by since the draft, we know going into it that the day will be interesting because there is always the possibility of there being further developments regarding whatever happened between manager Brandon Hyde and Chris Davis in the dugout during Wednesday’s loss.

There is reportedly not going to be any punishment given to Davis as a result of that whole thing. With the Astros scheduled to have former Oriole Wade Miley, a lefty, starting the game, the normal thing for Hyde to do this season has been to have Davis on the bench.

As a result of that, there will be nothing to read into an absence from the lineup for Davis. He has from time to time been on the bench against righties in the middle of prolonged stretches of poor performance as well, so even an absence on Saturday (Aaron Sanchez) or Sunday (Justin Verlander) doesn’t mean anything necessarily. It could be that there will not be anything said or done that would not have already been said or done today.

Still, I’m curious whether any new information will emerge as the media mixes with the players prior to the game. Will Davis have anything to say for himself after he skipped out of the clubhouse before the media could ask him any questions on Wednesday? Is there going to be any public apology from either party to the other?

These things are easier to latch on to the mind than how Dylan Bundy will fare against an Astros team that’s hit 192 homers already this season. The Orioles are 25 home runs shy of breaking the record allowed by a team in a single season. They could get a good chunk of the rest of the way there tonight.

Tonight happens to be the Orioles celebration of the 30th anniversary of the 1989 Why Not? Orioles team. The last time the team celebrated a big milestone for one of its past good teams was in 2016 when they honored the 50th anniversary of the 1966 World Series champions.

As fate would have it, the O’s also played the Astros on that night and Miley, an Oriole at that time, figured prominently in the game’s outcome. You remember the game. After the O’s took a 5-1 lead in the first inning, Miley blew the lead while being unable to complete the second inning. The Orioles lost, 15-8.

Miley, who’s inexplicably and (to me) irritatingly posted a 2.87 ERA in 39 starts since leaving the O’s, could ruin another one of these Friday night celebrations. Although in this case, it’s more that it could be a largely bad lineup doing poorly against Miley that could ruin the celebration.

Well, there will be fireworks after the game in either case, and maybe people will be able to console themselves with their giveaway t-shirts. Not me, I think those things are ugly and expect I’ll never wear mine, but hey, maybe someone will feel a little better. Or maybe the Orioles will win! That would be fun.

There have been 202 days since Mike Mussina was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Orioles have not yet announced any plans to retire his jersey number or erect his statue at Camden Yards.

Around the blogO’sphere

If you can believe it, the off day plus the Davis/Hyde thing the night before leaves us with not a lot of non-Davis stuff on this Friday.

Relationship between Brandon Hyde and Chris Davis will be watched closely after flare-up (Baltimore Baseball)
This really gets right to the core of it. Fair or not, there’s going to be a lot of extra scrutiny for at least a little while, until enough time has passed that it seems sure to have been settled.

Davis’s dust-up with Brandon Hyde brings spotlight neither the player nor team should seek (Baltimore Sun)
Being one of the worst teams in MLB is not great. Being the team that’s having fights in the dugout while being one of the worst teams in MLB... that makes it suck for this fan.

Matusz trying to make comeback via independent league (School of Roch)
Longtime readers of Camden Chat surely know that Brian Matusz was not my favorite Oriole. I still wish him good luck in his comeback effort.

‘There’s no way you’re fooling a machine’: A first-person look at the robot umpire system being tested by MLB (Baltimore Sun)
I think I like the robot ump’s chances of emerging from independent league better than Matusz, though.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

Of all the players to ever play for the Orioles, just one was born on this day: Chuck Essegian, who had exactly one pinch hitting appearance in one game for the 1961 O’s. He turns 88 today.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: orphanage founder and modern musical character Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton (1757), Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers (1899), actor Sam Elliott (1944), designer Michael Kors (1959), performing artist Whitney Houston (1963), football legend Deion Sanders (1967), and actress Anna Kendrick (1985).

On this day in history...

In 48 BC, a nearly 2-to-1 outnumbered Julius Caesar defeated Pompey in the Battle of Pharsalus, a decisive victory that settled the Roman Civil War in favor of Caesar.

In 1173 AD, construction began on a campanile (or bell tower) for the cathedral in Pisa, Italy. It took two centuries to build the campanile, which by the time it was finished was just a little bit crooked. Yes, it’s the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

In 1854, transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau published his famous work, Walden.

In 1945, the atomic bomb called Fat Man, dropped out of an American B-29 bomber called Bockscar, detonated over Nagasaki, Japan, killing an estimated 35,000 people in the immediate blast. Within a week, Japan surrendered to end World War II.

In 1969, five people, including actress Sharon Tate, were murdered by followers of the Manson family.


And that’s the way it is on August 9 - or at least, until something happens later when the Orioles play the Astros. Have a safe Friday. Go O’s!