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Saturday Bird Droppings: The Orioles are headed to arbitration with Anthony Santander

A big day in Baltimore; Mancini agrees to a deal for ‘21, it’s Trumbo’s birthday, and also the anniversary of the Davis contract.

New York Mets v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

Good morning, Birdland!

Teams had until 1 p.m. on Friday to come to an agreement with their arbitration-eligible players on a contract for the 2021 season. The Orioles were able to do that with all but one player, Anthony Santander. The two sides will now head to arbitration next month.

This isn’t a huge deal. Santander isn’t going anywhere. However, the arbitration process doesn’t typically do much to improve the relationship between player and organization, so it is not the preferred outcome of these discussions.

Santander was fantastic last year (.261/.315/.575, 138 OPS+), earning the honor of Most Valuable Oriole from the local press and a nomination for a Gold Glove in right field. But he also achieved those numbers in only 37 games during a really weird season. On top of that, the 26-year-old has never played in more than 93 games in a single season. So, while he may be headed for stardom, the Orioles have some reason for skepticism.


Mancini, O’s avoid arbitration with 1-year deal |
Trey Mancini, who missed all of 2020 following a cancer diagnosis in spring training, receives the same salary as a year ago. He will hoping for a breakout season in 2021 prior to his final year of arbitration eligibility.

Five years ago, Chris Davis’ wait for a contract ended. The Orioles’ wait for it to be over continues. | The Baltimore Sun
If ever there was a season in which Chris Davis didn’t really have a spot on the Orioles roster, this is it. Trey Mancini will be ready for spring training, and it doesn’t sound like he will have any restrictions. Ryan Mountcastle will play every day after an impressive debut a year ago. And the club has plenty of promising young bats that Brandon Hyde will want to filter in and out of the lineup.

Orioles preparing for arbitration hearing with Santander | School of Roch
Santander is likely headed for a modest raise during his first trip through arbitration. Here’s hoping he doesn’t emerge with a sour taste in his mouth following what is typically an unenjoyable process for players.

Orioles birthdays

Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!

Mark Trumbo is 35 today. The former Orioles slugger spent four seasons in Baltimore from 2016 through 2019 with the final campaign being almost completely erased by injury. He hit 87 home runs while donning the black and orange, including a league-leading 47 during the 2016 season.

It is the 38th birthday of Eider Torres, a middle infielder whose entire MLB career was encompassed in the eight games he played with the O’s in 2008.

Happy 42nd birthday to Jack Cust. The outfielder appeared in only 28 total games with the Orioles between 2003 and ‘04 but somehow still managed to commit one of the worst TOOTBLANs in franchise history.

This day in history

2016 - Avert your eyes. As mentioned above, the Orioles officially give first baseman Chris Davis the biggest contract in club history, $161 million over seven years. The deal will keep him signed through the end of the 2022 season.