There are now two months and 18 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day. It is eleven weeks from today! The start of spring training is just about one month away. The official pitchers and catchers report date still hasn’t been announced, which is kind of weird.
I’ve had this question on my mind ever since the free agent market more or less wrapped up without the Orioles making a significant addition: Is there going to be a significant trade between now and the start of the season? All you have to do is look at the roster plus the set of prospects on the cusp of the majors to guess that somebody’s getting traded eventually.
Maybe it will be before March 30. Mike Elias surprised us last year by trading away Cole Sulser and Tanner Scott just days before the season. The 2023 Orioles are heading towards the season with much different expectations, though, and they aren’t in a place where there are as many opportunities to trade veterans for prospects. Maybe when July rolls around, they’ll be trading prospects for veterans. It just seems like something’s gotta give.
Other teams are certainly out there swinging deals. Just yesterday, the Marlins and Dodgers pulled off a trade that brings veteran shortstop Miguel Rojas to Los Angeles, with infield prospect Jacob Amaya going the other way to Miami. With the Marlins being one of the teams that seems to match up with the O’s for surplus major league starting pitching, and with the O’s having a bunch of infield prospects themselves, does this impact that potential market? It might have all just been wishcasting anyway.
For now, we roll towards the start of the season with the Orioles being what they are. Is the starting pitching going to be good enough? Are enough the guys we’re counting on doing better than last year going to be able to do that? On the other side of that coin, will enough of the guys who we need to do as well as last year be up to that task? For the first time in a while, I’m impatient for the start of the season to start to find some of this stuff out. Eleven weeks isn’t so long, except that I have to write these posts twice a week and remind myself regularly of how long it is.
Around the blogO’sphere
Checking up on Orioles top international prospects (Baltimore Baseball)
Rich Dubroff, recently crowned one of the Maryland Sportswriters of the Year, runs through some of the progress made by past Orioles international signings as a new class is set to be signed starting on Sunday.
Some possible caravan questions for Orioles (School of Roch)
The Birdland Caravan is several weeks away, which hasn’t stopped Roch from figuring out what he’s going to ask to whoever he gets a chance to talk to.
O’s get Darwinzon Hernandez in trade with Red Sox (Orioles.com)
The lefty reliever allowed 16 earned runs in 6.2 innings last season, which is, uh, really bad. So’s the fact that he’s walked 73 batters out of 412 faced as an MLB pitcher. Balanced against this is 133 strikeouts. I guess if he can ever consistently throw strikes...
Released by the Tigers, Spenser Watkins learned to pitch as an Oriole (FanGraphs)
Another reminder that there’s a lot of advanced knowledge in the Orioles front office and coaching staff right now. Next step: Getting some better starting pitchers who can really take advantage of that knowledge to be good at the MLB level.
Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries
There are a number of former Orioles who were born on this day. They are: 2016-17 outfielder Hyun Soo Kim, 2005-09 reliever Chris Ray, 2012-13 reliever Luis Ayala, 1989-94 utility infielder Tim Hulett, 1986 infielder Juan Bonilla, and 1967 two-game pitcher Paul Gilliford. Today is Gilliford’s 78th birthday, so an extra happy birthday to him.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: fairy tale author Charles Perrault (1628), philosopher Edmund Burke (1729), novelist Jack London (1876), hockey player and doughnut magnate Tim Horton (1930), boxer Joe Frazier (1944), shock jock Howard Stern (1954), Rage Against the Machine vocalist Zach de la Rocha (1970), and One Direction crooner Zayn Malik (1993).
On this day in history...
In 1932, Hattie Caraway was elected to the United States Senate to represent Arkansas. Caraway’s husband was the previous senator, and after he died in office, she was appointed to fill out his term before being re-elected in her own right. Hattie Caraway was the first woman elected to the Senate and the first woman to serve a full term.
In 1970, Nigeria’s breakaway state Biafra surrendered, ending the nearly two-and-a-half year civil war in that country.
And that’s the way it is in Birdland on January 12. Have a safe Thursday.