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Friday Bird Droppings: Wondering about the next Orioles MVP

It’s been more than 30 years since an Oriole was crowned the AL Most Valuable Player. Is their next MVP currently on the roster?

Baltimore Orioles v Cleveland Guardians
If the O’s are going to snap their MVP drought anytime soon, these two guys are the best candidates to do it.
Photo by Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

The 2022 BBWAA award announcements wrapped up last night with the presentation of the AL and NL Most Valuable Player awards, won by the Yankees’ Aaron Judge and the Cardinals’ Paul Goldschmidt, respectively. Neither winner was much of a surprise, especially Judge, who broke the AL home run record with his historic 62-dinger season. Pretty good way to head into free agency, I’d say. More players should consider doing that.

The Orioles, as usual, were barely represented in the final voting breakdown. Adley Rutschman was the only Oriole to appear in any of the 30 AL voters’ ballots, which each run 10 deep. Rutschman received a fifth-place vote, an eight-place vote, a ninth-place vote, and a 10th-place vote, for a total of 14 points. Not too shabby for a rookie.

It’s now been 31 years since the Orioles last had an American League MVP winner, Cal Ripken Jr. They’ve won only two AL MVP awards in the last 52 years — both by Ripken, in 1983 and 1991 — after winning three in a seven-year span before that (Brooks Robinson in 1964, Frank Robinson in 1966, and Boog Powell in 1970).

With the Orioles bringing two of the best prospects in franchise history to the majors this year, could we see an end to the MVP drought soon? Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson both have sky-high potential, and it’s certainly feasible to imagine either of them putting up a spectacular season that blows the rest of the AL out of the water.

And if the drought continues for a while longer, so be it. It’s not as if the Orioles can’t be contenders, or even World Series champions, without an MVP-winning player. Judge’s MVP performance (thankfully) didn’t help his team get to the Fall Classic, and neither did Goldschmidt’s.

Still, it’d be nice, for the first time in a long time, for an Oriole to be celebrated as the league’s best player. Is it too much to ask?


Rangers to host MLB All-Star Game at Globe Life Field in 2024 -
Speaking of droughts, 2024 will be the Baltimore’s 31st year in a row without hosting an All-Star Game. Some cities have hosted multiple times since then. Which do you think will happen first: an Oriole wins AL MVP, or Camden Yards hosts another All-Star Game? If either?

Ortiz lands on Orioles 40-man roster as more than a defensive shortstop - School of Roch

Noah Denoyer racked up the Ks with the big boys on O’s farm - Steve Melewski

Rodriguez wants Orioles’ rotation spot in 2023: ‘Full speed ahead’ -

Between them, the local beats have you covered on three of the new additions to the Orioles’ 40-man roster, with Roch Kubatko profiling Joey Ortiz’s offensive surge, Steve Melewski crunching the numbers on Noah Denoyer’s strikeouts, and Rich Dubroff checking on Grayson Rodriguez’s health status.

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Two former Orioles were born on this day, including left-hander Jamie Moyer (60), who spent three seasons with the Birds as part of his incredible 25-year career. Also born on Nov. 18 was right-hander Steve Bechler, who tragically died at age 23 at O’s spring training in 2003 after suffering from heat stroke, with the now-banned supplement ephedra contributing to his death.

On this date in 1964, Orioles legend Brooks Robinson won his aforementioned AL MVP award, earning 18 out of 20 first-place votes to beat out the Yankees’ Mickey Mantle. Brooks had by far the best offensive season of his career, bashing 28 homers and collecting 118 RBIs while batting .317 with an .889 OPS. He also won the fifth of his record 16 straight Gold Gloves.