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Friday Bird Droppings: Where the hot stove is ice cold

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MLB free agency is underway, but you wouldn’t know it from teams’ collective inaction so far.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles-Workouts Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

Wow, it’s hard to keep up with the breakneck pace of the MLB offseason so far!

That, in case you couldn’t tell, was sarcastic.

It’s been more than two weeks since free agency officially began this offseason, and...well, there’s been a whole lot of nothing happening. Seriously, just check out this tracker. Of the nearly 250 free agents listed, a grand total of one (1) has signed a major league contract with a new team (Drew Smyly with the Braves). How exciting!

We knew this was going to be a slow winter, as teams tighten their belts and slash their budgets following a fanless 2020 season. And boy is this hot stove season living up to expectations so far. A lot of baseball fans are going to know what it feels like to be an Orioles fan most offseasons—they may end up with a few low-cost, scrap-heap signings, but most aren’t going to be making a big splash.

It’s going to be a loooong few months, folks. Especially since there’s no guarantee that the 2021 MLB season is going to start when it’s scheduled to. It might be time to find another hobby for a while.

Links

Orioles’ prospect Gunnar Henderson impresses during his time at Bowie - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Here’s yet more buzz for a prospect whose stock continues to rise, which isn’t too shabby for a guy who’s never played above the Gulf Coast League. Hopefully we’ll get to see him play some games in the state of Maryland sooner rather than later.

A former farmhand with thoughts on O’s prospects - Steve Melewski
Meanwhile, departing O’s minor leaguer Brian Gonzalez has some kind words for other Orioles prospects, including the much-heralded Adley Rutschman and the less-heralded Kyle Bradish.

Will Orioles protect Isaac Mattson from Rule 5 draft? - School of Roch
How about some more hype for O’s prospects? This time it’s Isaac Mattson, one of the pitchers acquired in the Dylan Bundy deal, who would be eligible for the Rule 5 draft if he isn’t protected this week.

Orioles and affiliates waiting on what 2021 will look like – The Athletic
Might as well make it a clean sweep for minor league-related links today. Dan Connolly writes about the uncertainty facing the Orioles' affiliates, one of whom — likely Frederick — is going to get cut. But what will become of Keyote?

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Four former Orioles were born on this day: 2017 three-gamer David Washington (30), 2011 lefty Jo-Jo Reyes (36), 1955 second baseman Don Leppert (90), and the late right-hander Herm Starrette (b. 1936, d. 2017).

On this day in 2012, the Orioles traded Robert Andino to the Mariners, ending his four-year tenure with the Birds that was highlighted, of course, by his utter destruction of the Red Sox in September 2011. Andino played parts of two seasons after the O’s traded him before calling it a career.