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Thursday Bird Droppings: The Orioles hit the road to try to stop the dang losing streak

Since June 9, the Orioles have won one baseball game. Their streak of road futility resumes in Buffalo today.

Houston Astros v Baltimore Orioles
Hard same.
Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

Do you feel a chill in here? Oh, no, I guess that’s just the Orioles. They are in a cold, dark place perhaps more suitable for aging certain types of cheese than anything else. Unfortunately, the Orioles are not cheesemongers. They are a baseball team, and for the last two months, they have really sucked. Wednesday’s latest loss was another shellacking by the Astros. Check out Alex’s recap of the game for some not-so-lovely totals.

After this latest loss, the Orioles are down to a 23-51 record for the season. That is a .311 winning percentage, which over a 162-game schedule works out to a 50-112 record. O’s fans have seen worse, and not too long ago. It was only 2018 where they had a poorer record than that.

It’s not like it is really much of a surprise. The blueprint of the Astros, where Mike Elias came as an assistant, involved three straight 100+ loss seasons at the MLB level. The 2020 performance was clearly a fluke, and in terms of the rebuilding process it was almost an unfortunate one, because the 25-35 record only put the Orioles at #5 in the draft instead of the higher pick they almost certainly would have earned with more games. Here we are in 2021 getting more games, and the O’s are what they are.

Even after their 5-23 record in May and 6-14 record so far in June, the Orioles continue to not be the team with the worst record in MLB. Arizona is still down there at the bottom. The Diamondbacks lost on Wednesday to fall to 21-55.

Arizona, you may recall, holds the MLB record for consecutive road losses at 23 and counting. That’s who the Orioles, at 19 and counting, are chasing. Arizona is off today and the Orioles are not as the O’s head north to play the Temporarily Buffalo Blue Jays, so the O’s could, with another loss, pull a game closer in their bid to seize that record for themselves. Arizona resumes on the road on Friday in San Diego, so they’ve probably got more losing in their future, too.

The good news is that there are 88 games remaining before this mess is over. Then we’ve all got six months to sit around and wonder how much the Orioles will suck next year, and how long it will be before our favorite baseball team is anything other than very, very bad. Isn’t that fun?

The series in Buffalo opens tonight at 7:07. Dean Kremer and Anthony Kay are the scheduled starting pitchers for the first game. Kay’s six 2021 games have generated an ERA over 6 for him, so, maybe there’s some hope. Never mind that Kremer’s ERA is also over 6.

Around the blogO’sphere

Adley’s goal? ‘Be the best player ... ever’ (
Talk about aiming high! I don’t hate to see it. Rutschman went on to say, “More suited to me: I just want to reach my potential.” Given what everyone says about him, that’s also aiming pretty high.

Data-driven damage: How swing-decision work is improving hitting across the Orioles farm system (The Baltimore Sun)
Here’s one of those articles about the rebuild that can pierce through some of the MLB-level gloom. It’ll pierce a little more of it once more of this success at least hits Norfolk.

Checking back on Orioles 2022 roster (School of Roch)
A few years ago, Baseball America did its standard peering into the future of the Orioles possible roster for next year. Not a bad success rate overall, though there are plenty of misses.

Mickey Jannis hopes knuckleball allows him to stay with Orioles (Baltimore Baseball)
The MLB debut last night could have gone better. But, Houston was a tough draw for a debut, and if he can occasionally give the O’s some length, he might hang around. Not like there are many better choices down in Norfolk. It’s hard not to root for a knuckleballer.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

The Orioles were last victorious on this day in 2017, when they won an 8-3 game over the Rays. Dylan Bundy pitched seven innings, while Welington Castillo, Adam Jones, and Trey Mancini all homered in the game. This was the first game of a three-game winning streak that got the Orioles back up to .500.

One lone former Oriole has a birthday today. Happy 64th birthday to 1995 reliever Doug Jones, who was below zero WAR for the club but picked up 21.5 WAR over 16 seasons as a big leaguer.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: writer Ambrose Bierce (1842), Fleetwood Mac’s Mick Fleetwood (1942), actress Mindy Kaling (1979), and footballer Lionel Messi (1987).

On this day in history...

In 637, Domnall II, the High King of Ireland, led forces to victory over lesser Irish kings in the Battle of Magh Rath. Historians believe there were around 100,000 fighters in the battle, making it the largest ever waged on the island.

In 1314, the Scottish army, led by Robert the Bruce, defeated the English in the Battle of Bannockburn, eventually leading to the recognition of Scottish independence 14 years later.

In 1509, England’s Henry VIII married Catherine of Aragon, and they lived happily ever after.

In 1812, Napoleon’s Grande Armée crossed the Neman River, marking the beginning of its invasion of Russia. At this time, the force had 685,000 men. By the end of the failed campaign, that number was down to 95,000.

In 1947, American aviator Kenneth Arnold claimed to have seen “nine unusual objects flying in tandem” while in the vicinity of Mount Rainier, Washington. This is recognized as the first widely-reported unidentified flying object, or UFO, sighting.


And that’s the way it is in Birdland on June 24. Have a safe Thursday. Go O’s!