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Monday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are quiet but the Rays are winning

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The ALCS has started and all is quiet in Birdland

Tampa Bay Rays v Baltimore Orioles Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images

Happy Monday, Camden Chatters! We are getting deeper into fall and closer to the conclusion of the truly bizarre 2020 baseball season. Last night the Astros and Rays faced off for game one of the ALCS with most of the baseball world rooting for the Rays. The Rays aren’t a perfect baseball team by any means, but they have never won the World Series and they aren’t a bunch of cheating cheaters, so it’s an easy pick for many.

If you do prefer the Rays, last night got off to a good start! It was a very close game but the Rays pulled out the 2-1 win to take a 1-0 series lead.

If you prefer the National League, then what are you doing on this here Orioles blog? Just kidding. The NLCS starts tonight at 8:08 p.m. between the Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers haven’t won the World Series since I was a child and they have been maybe the best team in baseball over the last several years. But the Braves have Nick Markakis and Darren O’Day, so I know who I’ll be rooting for.

Links

First offseason edition: "10 questions for O's fans" - Steve Melewski
You know how you know it's the slowest part of the offseason for the Orioles? Both Roch Kubatko and Steve Melewski wrote posts that are just a list of questions. If you read them both you can pretend that you're doing Camden Chat's 2021 pre-season contest very very early.

Which Oriole Had the Best Hair in 2020? - Eutaw Street Report
A very important topic for some. Another point in the “‘there is nothing to talk about right now” column.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! You have a bevy of Orioles birthday buddies. They are:

  • Nolan Reimold, who turns 37 years old today. One of the all-time “what could have been” players in the history of Camden Chat. He didn’t turn out to be movie script worthy, but he did play in 451 games for the Orioles from 2009-13 and 2015-16. We’ll always have those 16 awesome games in 2012, Nolan.
  • Francisco Peña (31). Son of Tony Peña, Francisco appeared in 19 games for the Orioles between 2016-17. If you blinked you probably missed him.
  • Paul Janish (38). Janish’s time in Birdland was short, he played for the Orioles from 2015-2017 but only appeared in 14 big league games each season. His Camden Chat legacy has outlasted him, because without those 42 games we wouldn’t know regular CC commenter, BubbaFan.
  • Leslie Brea (47). Eight games from 2000-01 and a 12.27 ERA makes up Brea’s entire major league career. That’s eight more games than most of us get.
  • Sid Fernandez (58). Baseball history will remember Fernandez as a Met but he did appear in 27 games as an Oriole from 1994-95.
  • Ray Murray (b. 1917, d. 2003). Ray Murray was a member of the inaugural Baltimore Orioles. At age 36, his final year in the majors, he appeared in 22 games for the 1954 Orioles.

Today is a pretty rotten day in Orioles postseason history, as the Birds have an all-time October 12th record of just 2-5. If you want to hear the grisly details, read on.

  • In 2012, CC Sabathia outdueled Jason Hammel and Nate McLouth didn’t hit the foul pole as the Yankees eliminated the Orioles in game five of the ALDS.
  • In 1997, the Orioles tied game four of the ALCS in the ninth inning, but in the bottom half of the inning Armando Benitez gave up the walk off single. Why why why.
  • In 1996, the Yankees beat the Orioles 8-4 to take a 3-1 lead in the ALCS. The best thing I can say about this game is that I don’t really remember it. The box score tells me that Rocky Coppinger made the start and honestly, if Rocky Coppinger is starting in the ALCS you’ve already lost.
  • In 1983, the Orioles defeated the Phillies in game two of the World Series. Yes! Thank you, 1983 World Champions. Mike Boddicker pitched a complete game with just one unearned run allowed, and he had an RBI at the plate. Cal Ripken, John Lowenstein, and Rick Dempsey each knocked in a run.
  • In 1979, it was Scott McGregor’s turn for a complete game, though he gave up four runs in game three of the World Series against the Pirates. Luckily his teammates scored eight, half of which came from Kiko Garcia in the leadoff spot. The 8-4 win put the Orioles up 2-1 in the series.
  • In 1971, the Pirates held the Orioles two just three hits in game three of the World Series. Two of those hits were by Frank Robinson, who also had the team’s only RBI. Mike Cuellar walked six batters in six innings and the Orioles made three errors in the field in the 5-1 loss.
  • In 1969, Dave McNally gave up just two runs in nine innings against the New York Mets. But the Orioles offense had only two hits and the team lost 2-1 to tie the World Series at 1-1.