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Saturday Bird Droppings: The winning streak comes to an end

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In today’s batch of Orioles news, Mountcastle wins an award and the O’s lose a pair of pitchers to injury.

MLB: JUL 02 Orioles at Angels Photo by John Cordes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Good morning, Birdland!

West coast games are already pretty rough for those of us in the Baltimore area given the late start times. They are worse when you go to sleep with the Orioles leading and wake up to see them lose it late. in case you missed it, Mark stayed up late to provide a recap of the 8-7 heartbreaker.

But a loss does not mean that everything that happened in the game was bad. In fact, there was actually a lot of very good news despite the defeat.

Trey Mancini hit the longest home run by an Oriole all season last night, a 451-foot bomb to dead center. Domingo Leyba hit the first home run of his major league career. And prospective high school coach Spenser Watkins made his big league debut. That was all pretty cool, and maybe it made up for the fact you had to stay up until the wee hours of the morning to find out the Orioles lost another game.

Oh, it didn’t? Sorry about that.

Links

Mountcastle named Rookie of the Month | Orioles.com
You knew about this by now, but it’s worth reiterating. Ryan Mountcastle’s development at the plate may be one of the most important things happening at the big league level for the Orioles this season. His bat is going to be important for future versions of this club, and significant early struggles were concerning. But he has completely turned things around at this point. Now, about that glove...

Orioles’ Hunter Harvey: Slated to miss extended time | CBS Sports
This is extremely disappointing news. Clearly there is a ton of talent in Hunter Harvey’s arm, but for whatever reason he has got just terrible luck when it comes to staying healthy. Hopefully this set back is on the minor side. Right now the expectation is he will miss a month.

Orioles’ Travis Lakins: Dealing with significant injury | CBS Sports
This was not too shocking given the way that Travis Lakins reacted when he got hurt on Tuesday. The righty immediately called for the medical staff, so you had to think he felt something wasn’t right. They are saying it is elbow discomfort, and given that it has been dubbed “significant” it makes Tommy John surgery sound likely.

Orioles prospect Gunnar Henderson dominated in Delmarva. Now, he’s embracing the challenge of figuring it out in Aberdeen. | The Baltimore Sun
This serves as a good reminder that even though Gunnar Henderson is a really exciting prospect, he is still just 20 years old, and he isn’t going to sail through every level of professional baseball. It’s nothing to worry about just yet. The shortstop will sort things out in Aberdeen. It might just take a little longer than it did in Delmarva.

Orioles birthdays

Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!

  • Tommy Hunter turns 35. The current Mets hurler has had two stints with the Orioles, first from 2011 through 2015, and then again in 2016. Altogether he produced a 4.16 ERA over 407 innings as an Orioles pitcher, split between the rotation and bullpen.
  • Jeff Rineer celebrates his 66th birthday. He threw one inning of Major League Baseball in his career, and it came with the 1979 Orioles.
  • The late Al Pilarcik (b. 1930, d. 2010) was born on this day as well. The former outfielder had a four-season run with the O’s from 1957 through 1960, during which time he posted a 95 OPS+ over 517 games.

This day in history

It looks like not much has happened on this day in Orioles history, according to Baseball Reference. So, here are a few non-Birdland events from this day:

1893 - The first state normal school in the United States is opened in Lexington, Massachusetts with three students.

1890 - Idaho becomes the 43rd state in the U.S.

1938 - An English train called Mallard sets the world speed record for a steam locomotive, going 125.88 miles per hour.