Good morning, Camden Chatters.
There was potentially big news regarding the MLB lockout yesterday. No, the owners and players didn’t have any breakthroughs in negotiations. Instead, MLB reportedly put in a request to a government agency, the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, to serve as mediators in talks between the two sides.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan wrote that this could be a positive sign, as federal mediators helped resolve the 2013 NHL lockout and the 2015 MLS strike, though he cautioned that mediators didn’t help during the MLB strike in 1994, instead angering players and failing to create a pathway to a timely agreement. With current negotiations progressing at a snail’s pace and spring training scheduled to begin in two weeks, Passan believes it’s possible that a mediator “could accomplish what neither side has been able to in 10 months of negotiating.”
The Athletic’s Evan Drellich struck a much more skeptical tone, writing that the MLBPA is likely to reject the use of federal mediation because of their unpleasant previous experience in ’94, as well as their fear that outside mediators will suggest a deal that doesn’t address the players’ primary concerns.
In short, not only are the sides far apart in their negotiations, but they may also be far apart on whether to bring in someone to help with negotiations.
And so we keep waiting. And the clock keeps ticking.
Welp, why not check out today’s Camden Chat Sporcle quiz? Can you match the city names to the team names for a bunch of Orioles minor league affiliates, past and present? There are five or six you should definitely know, especially if you’re a loyal reader of Camden Chat’s minor league recaps, but you might have to do some guesswork on the affiliates from the 1950s and 1960s. (And I didn’t even include some of the more obscure affiliates.) Good luck!
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Orioles birthdays and history
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Nobody with a Feb. 4 birthday has ever played for the Birds. Your closest thing to an Orioles birthday buddy is former O’s minor league manager Gary Allenson, who turns 67 today.
On this day in 2011, the Orioles reached agreement with veteran DH Vladimir Guerrero on a one-year, $8 million deal, seven years after he had spurned them in free agency for the Angels. Although Vlad was on his way to the Hall of Fame, he looked nothing like it in his one year in Baltimore, which ended his major league career. In 145 games, Guerrero posted an uninspiring .733 OPS and 13 home runs, both the lowest marks of his career for a full season.