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Thanksgiving Bird Droppings: An Orioles season to be thankful for

The Orioles are actually good now, and poised to get even better. That’s something we all can celebrate.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Houston Astros
Thanksgiving dinner will taste sweeter for Manager of the Year runner-up Brandon Hyde.
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday and have plenty to be thankful for this year. From an Orioles fan’s perspective, we can be thankful that our favorite team is finally looking very much like a team on the rise, coming off a winning season with a talented young roster and the top farm system in baseball.

For those who are gathering with family and friends today, have a great time and do your best to tolerate those kind of weird, distant relatives you hardly ever see. And of course, if you’ve got a Thanksgiving feast on the table, feel free to eat until you’re uncomfortably full. That’s the true meaning of Thanksgiving.

Me, I’ve got a delicious meal waiting today, but I’m not going to let that distract me from discussing the Orioles. I’m a professional. So what moves do you think the O’s should make? I think they could use another setup man to team with Dillon Taste and Cionel Pie-rez. Of course a starting pitcher is a top priority, even though Gravy-son Rodriguez is ready to join the rotation and Dean Kremedcorn took a big step forward last year. And I wouldn’t mind signing a corner outfielder, even though that would mean trading Anthony Santandinner or Austin Hams. I look forward to seeing how the Orioles start stuffing this 40-man rosturkey.


Evaluating Elias after 4 years with Orioles -
Rich Dubroff reviews Mike Elias’s first four years as general manager. Those first three years weren’t particularly pretty on the field, but I’m pretty happy with where the Orioles have ended up, how about you?

Making the farm system productive for the big league team - Steve Melewski
As Melewski points out, the O’s can use their immense collection of young talent partly as trade ammunition to acquire proven major leaguers. So prepare yourself for the fact that some of your favorite prospects may be shipped out before they ever get to the Orioles. Sorry!

The Absurdly Preliminary 2023 ZiPS Projected Standings | FanGraphs Baseball
In this projection of the 2023 season in which no teams have made any offseason roster moves yet, the Orioles are slated to finish in last place in the AL East. What!? That’s it, we riot!

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Four Orioles in history were born on this date, including former #1 overall pick and current MASN analyst Ben McDonald, who turns 55. Happy birthday, Big Ben, and have an extra helping of Thanksgiving turkey in celebration. Other ex-O’s with Nov. 24 birthdays include left-hander Damian Moss (46), right-hander Fred Beene (80), and the late outfielder Jim Northrup (b. 1939, d. 2011).

On this date in 1982, Orioles legend Cal Ripken Jr. was named AL Rookie of the Year, earning 24 of 28 first-place votes to comfortably beat the Twins’ Kent Hrbek. It was just the beginning of a storybook, Hall of Fame career for the Maryland native. Ripken, who played most of the season at 21 years old, wasted no time in becoming a mainstay in the Orioles’ lineup, bashing 28 home runs — a total he would top only one other time in his 21-year career — while posting a .792 OPS. Manager Earl Weaver, in a prescient decision, moved Cal from third base to shortstop in the second half of the season, where he’d go on to become one of the greatest to ever play the position. Ripken started the final 118 games of that season and wouldn’t take another day off until 16 years later.