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Friday Bird Droppings: Back in a holding pattern

MLB labor talks (sort of) resumed yesterday, but it feels like it’ll be a while before anything is resolved, even as baseball games continue to fall off the calendar.

MLB: JAN 28 MLB Lockout Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

When I was last on Bird Droppings duty on Tuesday morning, following the marathon bargaining session between MLB and the MLBPA, I began by writing, “I don’t want to jinx anything, but the MLB lockout might be creeping toward its end.”

You guys. I jinxed it after all. I never should have opened my big yap.

How young and naïve I was those long three days ago. The lockout wasn’t close to its end. And now the end seems further away than ever before.

The first two series of the season have already been struck down from the schedule. By this time next week, two more series probably will have been canceled as well. The owners and players still seem so far apart on several contentious issues that it’s hard to see a new collective bargaining agreement coming together anytime soon.

For what it’s worth, the two sides are staying in contact:

If I may offer my thoughts about the “timing of talks from here”: how about every single day until the lockout is over? Seems like a good idea, no?

You know what else is a good idea? Taking today’s Camden Chat Sporcle quiz. This was a particularly fun one to put together. In honor of the best and most loquacious manager in Orioles history, can you pick the word or phrase that completes these Earl Weaver quotes?


He’s No. 1: A look at the Orioles' top international prospect - Steve Melewski
Melewski is beginning a series about the Orioles’ 20 best international prospects, which is quite a change from recent seasons in which there literally weren’t 20 international players in the entire system. Up first: Maikol Hernandez.

Uvila hopes a big league career with Orioles is in the cards -
One of the newest Orioles is a 28-year-old, former 40th round draft pick who pays the bills with poker winnings. I don’t know about you, but I’m rooting for this guy to make the majors someday.

Buddy Baumann signs Minor League deal with Orioles -
Speaking of unlikely stories, new minor league signee Buddy Baumann had retired from baseball and was a coach in the Angels’ system before the O’s convinced him to give pitching another shot. The Orioles truly are the land of opportunity for pitchers, because have you seen their current staff?

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! You share your day with two former Orioles right-handers named Rodriguez — Richard (32) and Nerio (51) — as well as Maryland-born 1960-63 O’s right-hander Jack Fisher (83) and the late O’s utility man Bob Johnson (b. 1936, d. 2019).

The Orioles have made a bunch of minor league signings on this date in history, because they’re usually well into spring training by now. Sigh. On this day in 2012, the O’s inked right-hander Miguel Gonzalez, who’d spent several years in the Mexican League. It was such an under-the-radar deal that he didn’t even get an invite to major league camp. But Gonzalez ended up being a huge part of the Orioles’ rotation for the 2012 and 2014 playoff teams, posting a 3.45 ERA in 75 games during his first three season.

And on this day in 2014, the Orioles made a much more ballyhooed signing that ended up amounting to nothing, inking two-time Cy Young winner Johan Santana to a minor-league deal. Santana hadn’t pitched in two years because of a tear in his pitching shoulder, but was on the rehab trail with the Orioles until he blew out his Achilles in an extended spring training start in June. He never made it back to the majors.