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Monday Bird Droppings: The anniversary of Camden Yards opening

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Today in 1992, the Orioles played their first game at Camden Yards.

Baltimore Orioles
Rick Sutcliffe went the distance as Camden Yards opened on this day in 1992.

Hello, friends.

In another world where there were neither coronavirus nor rain postponements or cancellations, the Orioles would have played nine games by now. I think it is likely that the nature of the team’s season-long failure would already be apparent, although you never know. They did start last year 4-2, after all. That was fun, even if what followed after generally was not fun.

In the imaginary 2020 season simulation being carried out on Baseball Reference using Out of the Park Baseball 21, the Orioles have a 2-7 record. They closed out their first road series against the Cardinals “yesterday” with a 9-4 loss. This would not have been a surprising outcome for the real life 2020 squad, though it is not terribly likely that 60% of the rotation would have been Aaron Sanchez, Keyvius Sampson, and Kyle Lloyd.

Standing out for these simulated Orioles so far are Austin Hays (1.157 OPS) and Anthony Santander (1.086), with solid performance also from Dwight Smith Jr. (.820), Rio Ruiz (.826), and Jose Iglesias (.822). A variety of other simulated Orioles have not done so well, which is probably why this team is 2-7.

These imaginary 2020 Orioles are off to New York today to once again play the Yankees. The simulation updates at noon every day, so if you’re reading this in the afternoon, you can check out today’s results.

Around the blogO’sphere

Baseball’s shutdown impacting minor league preparation (School of Roch)
Said Norfolk manager Gary Kendall, “Actually having time to go out and cut your own grass is weird, you know?”

O’s prospect shows off unreal arm strength (Orioles.com)
If “Grayson Rodriguez throws a ball over a lake” isn’t a video you’ve already seen by now, take this chance to correct that.

Chris Davis had a strong spring, but what could it mean now? (Steve Melewski)
Probably the same two things it meant three weeks ago: Jack and squat.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

Today in 1979, the Orioles were winners over the White Sox on Opening Day, 5-3. This was Earl Weaver’s 1,000th win as a manager. The game also saw Rich Dauer extend a streak of games with a run batted in to 11, dating back to the end of the 1978 season.

In 1992, Oriole Park at Camden Yards had its inaugural game. The Orioles beat the Indians, 2-0, as Rick Sutcliffe threw a five-hit shutout. Among the crowd of 44,568 was then-president George H.W. Bush.

Do you have a specific memory of what you were doing the day Camden Yards opened? I was in third grade. I don’t remember the day itself. I do remember people feeling emotions about the move away from Memorial Stadium, and I think I remember something about home plate being delivered by helicopter from Memorial to Camden - but no one else ever talks about that so I’m not totally sure I didn’t make it up.

Of all of the players to ever play for the Orioles, only one was born on this day: 1997-98 reserve outfielder Danny Clyburn. He passed away in 2012; today would have been his 46th birthday.

The following Baseball Hall of Famers were born today: Bert Blyleven (1951), Ernie Lombardi (1908), and Mickey Cochrane (1903).

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: country artist Merle Haggard (1937), Baltimore-born movie man Barry Levinson (1942), actor Paul Rudd (1969), and actress Peyton List (1998).

On this day in history...

In 1453, the Ottomans under Mehmet II began a siege of Constantinople. Centuries later, the city was renamed Istanbul. You might have heard the song.

In 1862, a Confederate army attacked the Union force being led by General Grant near Shiloh, Tennessee. After the Union victory the next day, an invasion route into Mississippi was open. At the time, the Battle of Shiloh had the highest number of casualties of any battle in American history.

In 1917, the United States of America declared war on Germany and joined World War I on the side of Britain and France.

In 1973, the designated hitter made its debut in the American League.

In 1974, the year’s edition of the Eurovision song contest was won by a Swedish band called ABBA, whose song, “Waterloo” helped launch them into wider fame.

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And that’s the way it is in Birdland on April 6. Have a safe Monday.