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Independence Day Bird Droppings: Happy birthday to America, and Peter Angelos

The Orioles will spend their Fourth of July playing the Angels in Los Angeles.

Tampa Bay Rays v Baltimore Orioles Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

Hopefully you are having a nice holiday weekend so far. It may be nicer if you have not spent the last two late nights watching the Orioles playing the Angels. The good news is that it won’t have to be a late night to watch them today, unless something very weird happens. The series concludes starting at 4:07 Eastern today. Don’t let yourself end up with the lament like Will Smith from Independence Day: “I coulda been at a barbecue!”

I will confess that I did not choose to stay up late Saturday night to watch the entire Orioles game after having done that exact thing on Friday night. Watching the latest Jorge López struggle with the fifth inning combined with former Oriole Alex Cobb mostly dominating against the team that trade him away was enough to get me to flee for bed.

Maybe this will even post and look silly with the Orioles having made an improbable comeback! That would be fun. Two years ago I went to sleep with the Orioles playing the Angels out west, and when I woke up, I found out that Stevie “Dr. Poo Poo” Wilkerson had earned the save in the 16th inning. I didn’t regret having gone to bed but I had a little envy for the people who stayed up and saw it all.

It’s been a busy weekend out west for the Orioles so far. They are constantly tinkering with the fringes of the roster and have had a couple of injury problems to boot. Travis Lakins is now on the 60-day injured list, while Hunter Harvey is expected to be out for at least a month.

They’ve also designated Stevie Wilkerson and Konner Wade for assignment, and the scramble for scrubs to serve as depth has brought infielder Kelvin Gutierrez from the Royals for cash and pitcher Shaun Anderson off waivers from the Rangers. Things will have probably ended up going awry - well, even more awry than they already are - for either of these two fellows to play for the MLB-level Orioles.

Around the blogO’sphere

Jahmai Jones: “I’m definitely happy to have a fanbase in Baltimore” (School of Roch)
Nobody’s as popular as the Triple-A second baseman when the MLB-level second basemen have all sucked. Hopefully Jones can push his way to the Orioles. Maybe getting three hits and two walks last night will help.

Orioles injuries and roster moves: John Means update (
The result is a couple of scrubs you’ve never heard of have recently been claimed on waivers. Oh, and John Means is going to rehab in Aberdeen starting today. Hooray!

Gunnar Henderson dominated in Delmarva. Now he’s embracing the challenge of figuring it out in Aberdeen. (The Baltimore Sun)
Henderson still has only one hit since being promoted to High-A, though he’s walking a bunch.

A look at O’s draft preparations with Brad Ciolek (Steve Melewski)
Ciolek is the Orioles director of domestic scouting operations. Safe to say he knows a thing or two about the players the O’s are considering with the #5 pick. Does he tip any of that to Melewski? No, of course not.

Prospect Jordan Westburg sees ‘pressure as a privilege’ in rebuilding organization (Press Box)
Westburg, the Orioles pick at #30 overall last year, is one of the many middle infielders trying to work his way up through the system.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

The Orioles last won a game on the Fourth of July in the 2010 season. Some of those years had either a rainout or a quirky scheduled off day, but mostly the Orioles have just lost. Their 2010 win was a 6-1 triumph over the Red Sox. Brian Matusz pitched seven shutout innings to take the Orioles a long way towards the win.

Only one former Oriole has an Independence Day birthday. That’s 1956 four-game reliever Babe Birrer, who passed away in 2013 at age 84. Today is also the 92nd birthday of Orioles owner Peter Angelos.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: mountain namesake George Everest (1790), novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804), 30th president Calvin Coolidge (1872), Dear Abby creator Pauline Phillips (1918), Maryland-born tennis star Pam Shriver (1962), J-rocker Gackt (1973), and rapper Post Malone (1995).

On this day in history...

In 1054, a supernova was sighted by observers in China’s Song dynasty as well as in the Arab world, with some evidence it was also observed by indigenous people in America. This supernova, SN 1054, eventually formed the Crab Nebula, located within the constellation Taurus.

In 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Second Continental Congress. Exactly 50 years later, two of the key figures in its creation, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, passed away.

In 1863, during the Civil War, the city of Vicksburg in Mississippi surrendered to the Union army led by Ulysses S. Grant, following a 47-day siege.

In 1960, the current 50-star American flag design was officially debuted, nearly a full year after Hawaii had been admitted as the 50th state.


And that’s the way it is in Birdland on July 4. Have a safe Independence Day. Go O’s!