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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles have one more interleague series

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The O’s carry a five-game losing streak into a matchup against the best team in the National League. Well, great.

MLB: Texas Rangers at Baltimore Orioles Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

The Orioles, at least theoretically, could’ve looked at most of their September schedule as a chance to bag some victories. Last Thursday began a 20-game stretch in which the O’s had 17 matchups against losing teams (not that it did them any good against the Rangers, who swept them in four).

Tonight, though, begins the only series in that stretch against a winning team, and it’s one of the winningest: the Los Angeles Dodgers, the best team in the National League. They’re currently 17 (!) games ahead in the NL West, the largest division lead of any club. Their magic number to clinch the division is one. They’ve won the West every season since 2013.

Speaking of 2013, that’s the last time the Dodgers visited Camden Yards before tonight. The O’s took two of three in that series, with Chris Davis, Adam Jones, and Manny Machado all homering. None of the Dodgers’ position players from that series are still active in the majors, but the Birds did face Hyun-Jin Ryu and Kenley Jansen, who are still Dodgers today. In this series, just like last time, the O’s will avoid facing Clayton Kershaw.

The Orioles’ chances of snapping their five-game losing streak don’t look good, although if the Dodgers clinch in the first game, they might rest their regulars in the last two. Of course, the Dodgers’ backups may still be better than the Orioles’ starters.

Links

Minor, Manto among latest dismissals from Orioles (updated) - School of Roch
The Orioles’ minor league housecleaning continued with another spate of firings throughout the organization. The list includes a bunch of names familiar to O’s fans, including Scott McGregor, Ryan Minor, Jeff Manto, and Calvin Maduro. Basically, if your last name begins with M, you’re in trouble.

Can Hanser Alberto go from waiver claim to claiming a batting title? - Steve Melewski
The “batting title” doesn’t mean as much as it used to, given the flaws with batting average and all, but it’s still incredible what Hanser Alberto has done this season. What a joy to watch he’s been at the plate.

Inbox: Which O’s have set themselves apart? - Orioles.com
Joe Trezza answers questions from readers. If you were hoping to see Adley Rutschman in an Orioles uniform next year, he douses some cold water on that idea.

TA30: With the Big Three cementing their status, the wild card contenders are ready to rumble – The Athletic
Grant Brisbee, in ranking the Orioles 29th, employs an extended metaphor about a man covered in millipedes. It works surprisingly well.

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? It is?? You share a birthday with... wait for it... wait for it... meeeee! Have a great day, birthday buddy!

We have the same birthday as ex-Orioles Danys Baez (42) and Matt Angle (34). Also born on this day were O’s minor leaguers Michael Baumann (24), who will celebrate by starting Game 1 of the Eastern League championship series tonight for Bowie, and Aberdeen righty Dan Hammer (22), a 13th-round draft pick out of the University of Pittsburgh in 2019.

Other big leaguers in the Sept. 10 birthday club include Hall of Famers Randy Johnson and High Pockets Kelly, longtime single-season home run king Roger Maris, and two of the best first basemen in the game today, Paul Goldschmidt and Joey Votto. And among non-baseball players, it’s the birthday of late golf legend Arnold Palmer, Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry, ballet dancer Misty Copeland, directors Guy Ritchie and Chris Columbus, and actors Colin Firth, Kate Burton, Clark Johnson, Ryan Phillippe, and Johnathon Schaech (a noted O’s fan who wrote a book about Rick Dempsey).

On this day in 1983, the Orioles swept a doubleheader at Yankee Stadium. They won the first game with a six-run rally in the ninth off Hall of Famer Goose Gossage, capped by a John Lowenstein grand slam.