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Thursday Bird Droppings: Lease done, it’s back to thinking about the Orioles rotation

You’re probably mentally checked out from work for the year, but Mike Elias probably isn’t

Boston Red Sox v Baltimore Orioles
Where Dean Kremer ends up in the 2024 Orioles rotation might determine how good I feel about it.
Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

There are now 98 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day 2024. We’ve gotten down into double digits! We are not yet down to “there’s a uniform number every day” territory yet, because while the O’s got a #99 for the first time ever when Jesús Aguilar joined the team in 2022, no one has yet worn any of numbers 89-98 in a game for the team.

With the official resolution of the Orioles lease for next year and beyond earlier this week, fans can return their full attention to the shape of the 2024 roster. Unless you’re like me and you want to think about what’s on the renovation wish list and whether these projects carried out by John Angelos will spoil what’s great to us about Oriole Park at Camden Yards. As far as next year’s roster, attention can more specifically go towards whether it should or will be altered based on either a free agent signing or trade.

The situation has not changed since Dean Kremer was blasted out of ALDS Game 3 and everyone’s attention could shift into next year mode as soon as they were ready to start thinking about that. The team will probably need starting pitching at least as good as what they got this year in order to have consecutive playoff appearances, and certainly better starting pitching than they got in the postseason this year to advance into the ALCS or beyond.

It is not a situation that needs to have urgency for the Orioles. Although I don’t particularly want them to do this, it’s not the craziest thing if they take a rotation of Kyle Bradish, Grayson Rodriguez, John Means, Dean Kremer, and Tyler Wells into spring training. That could work. It could also not work. Means wasn’t able to pitch in that postseason due to arm trouble and that when he was barely back from Tommy John surgery. Wells had a first half with a good ERA and mediocre FIP.

As my fellow Camden Chatter Tyler Young wrote yesterday, both the free agent and trade markets for pitching at this point are probably waiting around to see what choice is made by Japanese star Yoshinobu Yamamoto. Several teams believe they might have a chance to get him.

At one time it looked like Yamamoto might decide before Christmas, but it’s been rumored to be heading towards a first days of the new year decision. Teams that don’t get Yamamoto could be bidding on other free agents or trying to swing trades. Those who are looking to trade starting pitchers want as many rejected Yamamoto suitors involved as possible. The Orioles aren’t waiting for Yamamoto’s choice themselves, but players and teams they might be talking to could be waiting to see how it shakes out.

Around the blogO’sphere

Building an Orioles wish list, from a starting pitcher to an Opening Day debut (The Baltimore Sun)
It’s hard to resist the temptation to do a baseball team’s list for Santa Claus. The Orioles scratched off one of the two big items on their shopping list earlier this month. The other probably won’t be done by Christmas, and of course there’s no reason it has to be done by Christmas.

Another round of curiosities and questions (School of Roch)
It’s not a wish list from Roch, but he’s also wondering whether Jackson Holliday will make the Opening Day roster, among a couple of other things in this round.

Who is David Rubenstein, the billionaire said to be in talks to by the Orioles? (The Baltimore Banner)
The Banner did not get a direct interview with Rubenstein but has rounded up a variety of other quotes by and about him from over the years.

Anthony Villa settles into expanded role in O’s player development (Steve Melewski)
One of the important things about the Orioles being able to continue to succeed is whether they can keep on rolling as people are promoted or leave for jobs in other organizations. New director of player development Anthony Villa said, “The titles are new, the working relationship is more or less the same.” That sounds encouraging enough.

Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries

There are a number of former Orioles who were born on this day. They are: 2019-20 pitcher Asher Wojciechowski, 2012-13 catcher Taylor Teagarden, 2006 reliever LaTroy Hawkins, 1995 outfielder Andy Van Slyke, 1996 reliever Roger McDowell, and 1977 outfielder Elliott Maddox. Today is Maddox’s 76th birthday, so an extra happy birthday to him.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: terrier namesake Jack Russell (1795), baseball Hall of Famer Josh Gibson (1911), musician Frank Zappa (1940), actor Samuel L. Jackson (1948), and tennis legend Chris Evert (1954).

On this day in history...

In 1620, the Mayflower made its landing at what is now simply known as Plymouth Rock in Massachusetts after the name of their colony, Plymouth. The Plymouth Colony lasted from this date until 1691, when it merged with the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

In 1861, the precursor to the modern Medal of Honor for American military forces was first created as President Lincoln signed a bill into law that created a Medal of Valor for the Navy. A total of 3,535 Medals of Honor have been awarded.

In 1937, the premiere was held for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at a theater in Los Angeles. It was a noteworthy film for being the first feature-length animated movie.


And that’s the way it is in Birdland on December 21. Have a safe Thursday.