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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Jordan Westburg’s debut was a success

The Orioles won big in Westburg’s debut, they love having #1 prospects, and it’s Jeff Conine’s birthday!

MLB: Cincinnati Reds at Baltimore Orioles
And he plays good defense!
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday, Camden Chatters! The Orioles celebrated Jordan Westburg’s major league debut last night and aside from the rain delays, it could not have gone better. The Orioles welcomed Westburg by putting up double digits in the runs column.

Westburg endeared himself immediately by walking in his first plate appearance and scoring the team’s first run of the game. He had an RBI fielder’s choice and picked up his first major league hit in the game. And he made a very snazzy play up the middle to show off his defensive skills. He did it all with his parents and wife watching from the stands and a group of his buddies starting “Westy! Westy!” chants from behind home plate.

I just love a major league debut! Gunnar Henderson got the day off yesterday but I can’t wait to see a game with both him and Westburg in the infield together. Maybe tonight!

The win last night put the Orioles at 19 games over .500 for the first time this season. They had reached 18 games over four times but had never pushed it to 19 until now. I’m not happy with 19, though. Let’s make it 40! With a .623 winning percentage, they are now on pace for 101 wins.

More good news is that the Rays were idle last night, meaning the Orioles’ win pulled them up to just four games back of Rays. They remain just two games back in the loss column. In fact, the Orioles were the only team in the AL East who played last night so they actually gained a game on every team in the division.


Westburg walks off plane and right into O’s starting lineup -
Jordan Westburg and Brandon Hyde pre-game quotes about how awesome it is that Jordan Westburg is finally here.

What’s it like to be baseball’s No. 1 prospect? Adley Rutschman, Gunnar Henderson share their experience. - Baltimore Sun
This is a fun story about two former #1 prospects on the Orioles and the current/future #1 (depending on the list) Jackson Holliday. As a bonus, another #1 prospect is on the other team in town in Elly De La Cruz. It's funny to me that they clarified that Adley and Gunnar don't talk about being #1s. Like what would they say to each other? And you can always count on Adley for a sweet quote. "When I was here, I just wanted Gunnar to be here, too."

Baumann's best pitch graded on a curve - MASN Sports
Mike Baumann is throwing something he calls a spike curve. All I know is if he could become reliably good it would be good for my blood pressure.

Historic Tampa Bay Rays, Surprising Baltimore Orioles and Cincinnati Reds Helping Fuel Attendance Growth - Fastball
The Orioles have a home attendance that is so far 22% more than last year. That's good! I don't know that you should be surprised that three teams playing fun baseball are drawing more fans, though.

Birthdays and History

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! You have a whopping six Orioles birthday buddies. They are:

  • Lou Kretlow (b. 1921, d. 2007), who pitched for the 1954-55 Orioles.
  • Jackie Gutiérrez (63) played as a utility infielder for the 1986-87 teams, though he had just one plate appearance across three games in 1987.
  • Nelson Simmons (60) saw action in 16 games with the 1987 Orioles.
  • Jeff Conine (57) had two stints with the Orioles in the early 2000s and was a popular player on some bad teams.
  • Óscar Salazar (45) is one of many players during the dark years who I thought might be something. He was not something. He appeared in 51 games with the Orioles from 2008-09.
  • Jim Johnson (40), who pitched for the Orioles from 2006-2013 with 122 saves, 101 of which came in 2012-13. That’s third in Orioles’ history behind Gregg Olson (160) and Zack Britton (139).

On this day in 1967, two future Hall of Famers were injured. Oriole Frank Robinson collided with Chicago’s Al Weis at second base and missed 28 games with double vision (and I assume a concussion). Meanwhile, Baltimore native and Detroit Tiger Al Kaline broke his hand smacking a bat after striking out and also had to miss 28 games.

In 1997, the Orioles traded for Geronimo Berroa, sending Jimmy Haynes to the Athletics.

In 2022, the Orioles hit back-to-back home runs twice in a 9-2 win over the Mariners. Adley Rutschman and Ryan Mountcastle did it in the third inning while Austin Hays and Anthony Santander did it in the fourth.