There are now 178 days remaining until the next scheduled Orioles game, though your guess is as good as mine as to whether the game is able to be played as scheduled. For today, the baseball playoffs are still here to entertain us, as the two ALDS matchups will get started. In the 4 o’clock Eastern hour, Houston plays Oakland, while at 8 o’clock, the Yankees (boo!) face the Rays. These are both neutral site games that will air on TBS.
I look forward to some time when October 5 might be a day with an Orioles postseason game again. It has been a good one for them in history. Today’s date featured the first ever Orioles World Series game won in the first ever Orioles World Series game played, sweeps concluded in both 1971 and 2014, and in a battle of teams loaded with future Hall of Famers, the 1997 O’s also knocked off the Mariners on this day. That’s fun.
The only Orioles who will be getting any playoffs in today are the former Orioles whose new teams are still going. Some of them had more memorable O’s careers than others. The Yankees have Zack Britton, although obviously not very many Orioles fans will be rooting for his team’s success. The Rays had Oliver Drake on their wild card roster. Oakland had two former O’s in the last round: one-time Rule 5 pick T.J. McFarland, and former farmhand Jonah Heim.
That’s not exactly a lot of excitement to get a real former Oriole rooting interest going. The National League might have a bit more of that with Nick Markakis and Darren O’Day on the Braves, and Manny Machado and all of the coaches out there. They don’t get under way until tomorrow.
Who are you rooting for out of the AL teams that are left? I was most interested in the Twins, but alas, their postseason curse continued with last week’s results. I can’t bring myself to get too into any Orioles divisional opponent, so I guess it’s got to be the Athletics. Obviously, I hope the Rays knock off the Yankees, and I hope my expressing this mild preference does not bring any bad fortune to the Rays.
Around the blogO’sphere
Zooming past players in 2020 (School of Roch)
We’ve reached the “Roch makes fun of the Jerusalem reporter who took three minutes to ask Dean Kremer a question on Zoom after he pitched” portion of the offseason.
Big questions facing the Orioles this offseason (Orioles.com)
“Which breakouts were real?” is, indeed, a crucial question for the Orioles to answer. For most, the best way to answer it will be with 2021 performance.
Sunday Notes: Cesar Valdez throws a lot of changeups (Fangraphs)
Including in the Fangraphs Sunday notes column is an item about how Cesar Valdez threw his changeup 83.2% of the time. You may have heard them talk about it if you watched him pitch on MASN. It remains an unlikely thing.
Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries
A little more detail on the glorious October 5 in Orioles history:
Today in 1966, the Orioles beat the Dodgers, 5-2, in Game 1 of the World Series, in part thanks to home runs from both Frank Robinson and Brooks Robinson.
In 1971, the O’s finished off the Athletics in the ALCS, winning 5-3 to seal a sweep.
In 1997, the O’s headed to the ALCS after beating the Mariners, 3-1, with Mike Mussina out-dueling Randy Johnson for the second time in the series.
In 2014, the Orioles completed their unlikely ALDS sweep of the Tigers, winning a 2-1 game behind Nelson Cruz’s two-run homer.
One lone former Oriole was born on this day: 1996-98 reliever Terry Matthews. He passed away in 2012 at the age of 47.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: philosopher/critic Denis Diderot (1713), 21st president Chester A. Arthur (1829), The Family Circus creator Bill Keane (1922), Czech statesman Vaclav Havel (1936), Steve Miller Band’s Steve Miller (1943), architect Maya Lin (1959), hockey legend Mario Lemieux (1965), and actor Kate Winslet (1975).
On this day in history...
In 610, rebelling Byzantine general Heraclius arrived in Constantinople, killed the emperor, Phocas, and became the emperor himself. Heraclius lived and reigned for another 31 years.
In 1789, during the French Revolution, the Women’s March on Versailles took place. This is regarded as the effective end of French royal authority.
In 1947, President Truman delivered the first televised address from the Oval Office.
In 1970, PBS - the Public Broadcasting System - was founded.
And that’s the way it is in Birdland on October 5. Have a safe Monday.