The good news is that there are only 46 games left to be played by the 2021 Orioles. The bad news is that there are still 46 games left. If they play to their current winning percentage for the remainder of the season, they will go 15-31 from here on.
With how the Orioles have looked so far in August, it’s hard to imagine them even getting close to a .333 pace. The team is 1-12 for the month and they’ve lost 11 straight games. Eleven straight! Even the dismal 47-115 Orioles of 2018 never lost more than nine straight. The crappy 54-108 Orioles of 2019 maxed out at ten straight losses. Yet in 2021, 11 straight losses isn’t even the worst streak of the season. They lost 14 straight in May. I’m not ruling that out here.
At this point, we are well aware of who they are. There is an unfortunate percentage of the playing time going to players who have no business being on any major league team anywhere.
Another notable percentage of the roster consists of players with sufficient potential to be worth giving playing time on a rebuilding team, who have not yet done a dang thing to show that they deserve to stick around when the team is good again. Yesterday’s starting pitcher Keegan Akin is a prime example of a player in this category, though he’s hardly the only one. It is just brutal watching the pitching, and on top of that, the team’s clutch hitting has largely evaporated over the last few series as well. That’s how you go 1-12.
It’s really not much consolation to those watching the games daily, but this awful August play has gotten them closer to possibly getting into the #1 pick spot for the 2022 draft. The O’s and Arizona Diamondbacks now sit with an equal number of wins, at 38, though Arizona, with 81 losses, is still 1.5 games “up” in that chase.
If these teams end up tied at year’s end, the O’s would hold the tiebreaker. Normally, that would be worst record in the previous season, but the O’s and Arizona were tied at 25-35. That means the tiebreaker with the D-backs is worst record in 2019, when Arizona won 85 games. I would like for some players to improve and the #1 pick to not be in play. The players are not doing much to make this hope come to fruition.
Next up for the Orioles is a four-game series in the Trop. That gets started tonight at 7:10, with Matt Harvey taking the mound for the O’s. Yeah, I know what you mean. That three scoreless start stretch out of the All-Star break feels like a long time ago. Harvey gave up six runs in 1.2 innings the last time he faced the Rays in May.
Around the blogO’sphere
The Orioles shouldn’t be this bad. No amount of progress with the farm system makes it acceptable. (The Baltimore Sun)
Keep telling ‘em, Jon Meoli. There was a lot of room to still be pretty bad and still be better than this.
Adding only two players in September expands challenges (School of Roch)
Roch is already looking ahead to September callups. Maybe one of them will be Jahmai Jones.
Pitching remains in flux for struggling O’s (MLB.com)
“Kind of a revolving door from a pitching standpoint,” said manager Brandon Hyde in response to the latest flurry of moves from yesterday. It’ll be nice when we can at least move past these days of feeling like it’s complete chaos where no one will be playing any part on the next good Orioles team.
Miguel Cabrera has been a role model for the Orioles’ Anthony Santander (Baltimore Baseball)
From an on-field standpoint, there are a lot worse role models than a guy on the cusp of joining both the 500 home run club and the 3,000 hit club.
Could pitcher who began the season at Aberdeen end with Baltimore? (Steve Melewski)
Steve trumpets the accomplishments of minor league reliever Félix Bautista, who’s already been promoted twice this year. I would say maybe pump the brakes on this when the guy’s 26 and his BB/9 across three levels is 6.6. On the other hand, he might not be one of the three worst pitchers to pitch for the 2021 Orioles.
Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries
Today in 1969, Boog Powell hit an inside-the-park home run in the ninth inning of a 15-3 Orioles win in Seattle.
In 1998, Eric Davis had his hitting streak snapped after 30 games. This is the longest hitting streak in Orioles history. It will remain unchallenged for at least a little while longer, as Cedric Mullins had a 20-game hitting streak ended yesterday.
There are a few former Orioles who were born on this day. They are: 1995 infielder Bret Barberie, 1966-68 pitcher Gene Brabender, and 1955/58-60 outfielder Gene Woodling.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: movie subject T.E. Lawrence “of Arabia” (1888), author Diana Wynne Jones (1934), TV personality Kathie Lee Gifford (1953), singer-songwriter Madonna (1958), actor Steve Carell (1962), actor Taika Waititi (1975), and seven-time gold medal swimmer Caeleb Dressel (1996).
On this day in history...
In 1777, a militia-heavy American force defeated the British in the Battle of Bennington. It was a crucial factor in weakening the British in advance of the Battle of Saratoga, to come two months later.
In 1858, President James Buchanan made the first use of a transatlantic telegraph cable by exchanging greetings with the United Kingdom’s Queen Victoria. The service was shut down within a month or so due to a weak signal.
In 1896, three men including Skookum Jim Mason made a discovery of gold in a tributary to the Klondike River, setting off the Klondike Gold Rush.
In 1954, Sports Illustrated published its first issue.
And that’s the way it is in Birdland on August 16. Have a safe Monday. Go O’s!