Good morning, Birdland!
Welp, we remain without a new CBA between the league and the players. The two sides met again on Tuesday, this time for about 90 minutes, and little progress was made. Spring training is supposed to start in two weeks. In all likelihood, that won’t be happening and opening day is on the chopping block next.
The Athletic’s Evan Drellich is a must-follow for updates on this. He is reporting that the players relented slightly on a couple of their economic concerns. They also floated the idea of draft pick compensation as a reward for teams not manipulating service time. All of these things move in ownership’s favor just a touch, but a significant gulf remains.
This article from Jesse Rogers at ESPN does a good job of explaining why the dates of spring training and opening day would need to move depending on when an agreement is reached. In short, there is still time before any games of meaning are impacted, but that time is quickly running out.
Plus, there is still a TON of player movement to come. The Rule 5 draft needs to take place. Carlos Correa and Trevor Story are still free agents. Significant trades could be coming. The point is that teams may need longer than normal to rev up for the season simply because front offices have not had a full offseason to set rosters. It’s going to be a frantic dash to the start of the season.
Blood: O’s brought in “talented people from diverse backgrounds” | School of Roch
Some good stuff in here about the O’s coaching changes down in the minors. The other interesting nugget is that César Prieto is expected to start 2022 in low-A Delmarva. It’s a conservative assignment given his age, but probably wise to give him a soft introduction to affiliated baseball.
Despite loss of 1,000 seats with left-field project, Orioles’ Camden Yarda remains one of MLB’s largest venues | Baltimore Sun
One reason that the stadium was so loud when Delmon Young hit that double in Game 2 of the 2014 ALDS is because it was a sellout with a massive crowd. The other reason is that it was one of the greatest moments in baseball history. Obviously.
Many still behind Mike Elias, Brandon Hyde and the rebuild | The Athletic
Transparency buys you a lot of leeway. Elias has been straightforward with fans since he arrived in Baltimore. There was a lot of work to do, and it was going to take some time. It’s hard to argue against his success in developing a promising minor league system. But I also believe that 2022 and ‘23 are the pivot point. A poor record this year will be acceptable, but only if it also includes an encouraging peek towards the future. More wins need to be coming in 2023 and beyond.
Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!
- The recently retired Travis Snider turns 34 today. He played in 69 games fo the 2015 Orioles, a run that saw him slug .341 before he was released in August.
- Melvin Mora is 50. One of the best players of the team’s dark era, Mora spent a decade in Baltimore from 2000 through 2009 and compiled 29.1 bWAR in that time. He took his deserved spot in the Orioles Hall of Fame in 2015.
- Scott Erickson celebrates his 54th birthday. Acquired from the Twins in 1995, the righty stuck in Baltimore for seven years—two of which (2001 and ‘03) were lost to injury—and accumulated a 4.73 ERA over 200 appearances.
- Pat Clements turns 60. The southpaw wrapped up his big league career with 23 appearances out of the 1992 Orioles bullpen.
- Paul Kilgus also turns 60. He came out of the O’s ‘pen 38 times in 1991.
- Don Buford is 85 years old today. A 1993 inductee of the team’s Hall of Fame, Buford was somewhat of a utility player for the Orioles from 1968 through ‘72, although he eventually staked his claim to the everyday left field job. He posted a 126 OPS+ during his five seasons in Baltimore.
This weekend in O’s history
2005 - The Orioles trade for Sammy Sosa from the Chicago Cubs is finalized. Jerry Hairston Jr. and two minor leaguers—Mike Fontenot and Dave Crouthers—head to Chicago.