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Saturday Bird Droppings: Baseball’s hot stove remains tepid

In O’ news: Looking forward to Mancini’s return and the Keys wish to maintain a relationship with the organization.

Texas Rangers v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images

Good morning, Birdland!

The Hot Stove around the world of baseball remains fairly tepid, although there have at least been some interesting rumors floating around recently.

For example, the Rangers continue to shop slugger Joey Gallo, the Reds and Nationals have discussed a Eugenio Suarez trade, Michael Wacha is signing with the Rays, and Sonny Gray could be on the move.

With just a few days to go until Christmas, baseball could go quiet for a bit here. While deals can and will happen, some of the big stuff may get pushed to 2021 at this point. And of the course the biggest news of all, which is what the upcoming season will even look like, remains up in the air.

As for the Orioles, there hasn’t much to talk about since the Rule 5 draft. Expect more of the same with the possible exception of a shortstop addition sometime in the next couple of months.


Dealing with pitchers’ innings and yearly totals | Steve Melewski
It will be interesting to see how the shortened 2020 season as well as what is expected to be an abbreviated 2021 slate of games impacts player salaries a few years from now. They won’t really be able to be judge on their performance over 162 games if they haven’t been given the chance to play in those games.

Cobb on Mancini: “We’re all just so excited to give him a big hug” | School of Roch
Trey Mancini getting healthy and returning to the field will be the dominant storyline of the 2021 Orioles. He seems to be a genuinely great guy, and you never hear a teammate say anything negative about him. Not to mention he is the club’s best hitter, and plugging him back into the lineup makes the O’s a lot better.

What MLB’s recognition of the Negro Leagues means for Leon Day, Roy Campanella and other Baltimore standouts | The Baltimore Sun
I will honestly say that I don’t know much (if anything) about the history of professional baseball in Baltimore beyond the Orioles organization. But MLB’s recognition of the Negro Leagues as major league level competition has churned up a ton of amazing information about the city’s track record of talent ballplayers.

Frederick Keys Owner Ken Young Hopes Club Remains Connected To Orioles | PressBox
For many organizations, their minor and major league clubs are only loosely connected. The major league squad provides the players and the minor league franchise provides them a facility in which to play. For the Frederick Keys, they are located right in Birdland. Their fans are also Orioles fans. Their colors are the same as the Orioles colors. Sure, it would be nice to see a relationship between the two continue, but it’s difficult to see how that is possible given the overall direction of the big leagues.

Orioles birthdays

Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!

Doug Johns, an Orioles pitcher for two seasons (1998-99), turns 53 today. The southpaw appeared in a total of 63 for the club, splitting his time between the rotation and the bullpen, and accumulated a 4.52 ERA over 173.1 innings.

Chito Martinez celebrates his 55th birthday. The former outfielder spent parts of three seasons with the O’s from 1991-93. He owned a .259/.330/.445 slash line with 18 home runs and a 116 OPS+ over 158 total games.

Finally, happy 56th birthday to Mike Fetters. The righty made his way into 27 games for the ‘99 O’s and posted a 5.81 ERA.

This day in history

1976 - Minutes after the end of a playoff game between the Colts and Steelers, a single-engine plane crashes into the upper deck at Baltimore’s Memorial Stadium. Luckily no one, including the pilot, was seriously injured.

1991 - Right-handed pitcher Rick Sutcliffe signs a one-year contract with the Orioles.