There are now 60 days remaining until the next scheduled Orioles game, which is Opening Day. In another day, we’ll be able to say that Opening Day is just two months away. You know, provided nothing happens to change that, which will probably feel like a possibility to me until they say “Play ball!” on April 1.
Baseball always feels farther away to me when there’s snow on the ground. Today it looks like much of the home turf of Birdland is in for some amount of snow or another, with more coming tomorrow, depending on how things work out for a second wave. I hope that wherever you are, you get enough snow that you are able to have a little fun with it and not so much snow that you have a giant hassle trying to clean it up.
The weekend has already been a bit of an eventful one across baseball, though obviously there isn’t so much excitement in Birdland, or even necessarily in the American League at all. The biggest thing is the coming trade of Nolan Arenado from the Rockies to the Cardinals.
It’s a stunning situation. I think that we were all understandably disappointed when the Orioles got to the point where trading Manny Machado was the most prudent choice. Can you imagine how much worse it would feel if the Orioles did give Machado a big contract extension and then they still ended up having to chip in $50 million to get a paltry package of prospects in order to no longer have Machado on the team because Machado was so disgruntled with the state of the team that surrounded him?
The fact that career-long Rockie Todd Helton looks to be on the path to eventual Hall of Fame induction after being picked on 44.9% of ballots in his third year is probably not much of a consolation prize. How miserable. Arenado didn’t have a good year in 2020, so maybe Colorado will end up looking smart in the end if that was the beginning of a swift fall off the cliff, but for now, holy mackerel. I hope that once the Orioles are good again, they don’t find themselves in a position where they have to do what Colorado did here.
Around the blogO’sphere
Orioles’ lingering lineup questions (School of Roch)
Freddy Galvis as the number two hitter in the lineup is not a very exciting possibility, so we can only hope that this prediction from someone who has spent his career cultivating Orioles knowledge and expertise is completely wrong.
Orioles use of pitching depth to protect prospects could look different in 2021 (Baltimore Sun)
This particular article doesn’t make it sound like there will be any Wade LeBlanc-level signings before the 2021 season because enough prospects are close enough. I hope it’s correct, because I’d rather see prospects than LeBlancs.
Breaking down the 2021 top 100 prospects list (MLB Pipeline)
If you haven’t heard, the Orioles have five guys on this list. I don’t hate it.
The comparisons will be coming for these shortstops (Steve Melewski)
Melewski notes that Freddy Galvis and Jose Iglesias will be linked through this season. If Galvis stinks and Iglesias is amazing, well, that won’t be fun.
Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries
There is one lone former Oriole with a birthday today. Happy 51st to Joel Bennett, who pitched two games in relief for the 1998 Orioles.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: Tokugawa shogunate founder Tokugawa Ieyasu (1543), Constitution preamble writer Gouverneur Morris (1752), first Tour de France organizer Henri Desgrange (1865), baseball legend Jackie Robinson (1919), author Norman Mailer (1923), baseballs Hall of Famer Ernie Banks (1931) and Nolan Ryan (1947), punk bassist Fat Mike (1967), and actor Kerry Washington (1977).
On this day in history...
In 1606, Guy Fawkes and three other conspirators were executed for treason for their role in the Gunpowder Plot that sought to blow up the Parliament building. The execution was carried out by hanging, followed by drawing and quartering of the corpses.
In 1865, Congress passed the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which once it took effect outlawed slavery in the United States.
In 1915, during the Battle of Bolitow in World War I, Germany used poison gas against the Russians, believed to be the first large-scale chemical warfare in history.
In 1968, during the Vietnam War, the American embassy in Saigon was attacked by Vietcong as part of the Tet Offensive.
And that’s the way it is in Birdland on January 31. Have a safe Sunday.