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Saturday night Orioles game thread: at Blue Jays, 6:37

John Means has been trending in the right direction lately, and tonight he gets a chance to finish his season on a high note.

New York Yankees v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

It’s almost over. This bizarre, truncated, never-thought-it-would-actually-get-completed 2020 Orioles season has reached its penultimate game. The 24-34 Birds have two remaining games in Buffalo against the Blue Jays before heading home for the winter.

For those of you who are interested in the Orioles’ current draft-pick position — assuming the 2021 draft order is based on 2020 records — their .414 win percentage is currently tied for sixth-worst in the majors, but a whole lot of teams are within one or two games of them.

The highest draft pick the O’s could end up with is No. 3, but that would require a lot of things happening in a very specific way: the O’s would have to lose their final two games, while the Red Sox win their final two and the Nationals at least one. There’s also the issue of the Tigers, who currently have only two more games scheduled, but might be forced to play a doubleheader against St. Louis on Monday (making up games that were postponed during the Cardinals’ COVID outbreak last month) if those games matter for the NL playoff race. If that happens, the Tigers would need to win three of their remaining four games or else they’ll get a higher pick than the Orioles.

So yeah, the No. 3 pick probably won’t happen. But no matter what, the O’s are guaranteed a top 10 pick. So what do you say we just enjoy these final two contests and end the season on a high note, yeah?

One guy hoping to finish strong is John Means, who has rattled off three straight outings of allowing just one run. His ERA, which stood at 8.10 on Sept. 2, is down to 5.02, and Means could get it under the 5 mark with another solid performance tonight. That’d certainly be a feel-good finish to a season that started so ugly for him.

Orioles lineup:

LF Austin Hays
SS Jose Iglesias
1B Ryan Mountcastle
RF DJ Stewart
C Pedro Severino
3B Rio Ruiz
DH Hanser Alberto
2B Ramon Urias
CF Cedric Mullins

LHP John Means