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Tuesday Bird Droppings: It’s All-Star Game Day

Jorge López represents the Orioles in tonight’s Midsummer Classic, the O’s draft pitchers, and the Birds have higher aspirations.

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MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Birdland!

It is Jorge López’s day. The Orioles’ closer will be the team’s lone representative at tonight’s all-star game, and he just might get the opportunity to pitcher a crucial inning. It’s no guarantee, however, as the AL roster includes nine starting pitchers and six relievers. It would be a real bummer if he gets the John Means treatment, meaning the Orioles would have had only one player (Cedric Mullins, 2021) actually appear in an All-Star Game over the last four seasons.

The other big news of the day is that the MLB Draft concludes today with rounds 11-20. The O’s drafted exclusively college players on Monday, including a few seniors. So they may have a little wiggle room on signing bonuses. That could lead to a few interesting picks today that have talent worthy of a much higher draft status.

But in general the quality of this draft class has already been established. Jackson Holliday will be the key player while the others selected in the top five rounds or so will also be depended upon for major league contributions of some sort. That does not mean today is without importance, though. Cedric Mullins was a 13th-round pick after all.


MLB’s biggest surprise? Make way for the Orioles — and the possible beginning of a long, successful run | Yahoo! Sports
You love to see a national outlet take notice of the Orioles with the understanding that this season should be just the beginning of a very fun run of baseball for the team. The evidence used here is a solid big league squad, a top-tier farm system, and the proof of concept that were the Houston Astros.

Finally taking pitching; a 2-way guy; son of an ex-O | The Athletic
Perhaps the influx of pitching on day two will quiet some concerns about the Orioles drafting habits, particularly from Connolly. I will not pretend to know if any of the arms taken have the ceiling of big league contributors, but there is enough reason for me to believe in the development system that the front office has put in place.

Breaking even at the break doesn’t excite Orioles | Roch Kubatko
The confidence that this team has is part of what has made them so compelling. Of course they think that they can do better than .500 at this point, and I am inclined to believe them. Why wouldn’t I? They have been an above-.500 team since May 1. That’s a long enough stretch to make you start to believe.

Orioles birthdays

Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!

  • David Segui turns 56. The Kansas native had two stints with the Orioles, first from 1990 through ‘93, and then again from 2001 through ‘04. Altogether he had a 100 OPS+ for the O’s over 580 games with the club.
  • Dan Graham celebrates his 68th. His Orioles career spanned two seasons from 1980 through ‘81, and he totaled an 88 OPS+ over 141 games.
  • Billy Gardner is 95 years old today. The infielder played three seasons in Baltimore from 1956 through ‘59. During that time he batted .236/.293/.325.

This day in O’s history

1994 - A game between the Mariners and Orioles that is scheduled to be held at the Kingdom in Seattle is postponed after four wood-fiber tiles fall from the ceiling into empty seats. Inspections are required of the water-damaged tiles, and they must be replaced.