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Saturday Bird Droppings: Opening the second half with a bang

Adam Frazier was the hero, Sunday Night Baseball will come to Baltimore, and a chance at taking the AL East lead.

Miami Marlins v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

Good morning, Birdland!

Oh yeah, that felt good! The O’s opened the “second half” with a 5-2 win over the visiting Miami Marlins, and they looked good while doing it.

Dean Kremer had his good stuff, piling up eight strikeouts over six innings. The righty had the Marlins lineup constantly off balance, chasing changeups below the zone, and swinging under fastballs up in the zone. The bullpen was pretty good behind him too with scoreless outings from Bryan Baker and Félix Bautista. Their only blemish was a solo homer from Jorge Soler off of all-star Yennier Cano.

There was plenty to like on offense as well, but the clear standout was Adam Frazier. The veteran infielder went 3-for-4 with two homers (his first career multi-homer game) and four RBI. But Cedric Mullins also had a huge night, with three hits of his own, including a homer, plus two runs scored and a stolen base. And let’s not forget about Ryan O’Hearn. He got on base three times.

Much of that came against Miami starter Sandy Alcantara, who is admittedly not having the best season. But he’s still a really talented arm that touched 100 mph throughout the night. The O’s chased him after six innings, struck out just five times and compiled eight hits and a walk. That’s a good performance against a real good opponent.

The Rays were rained out in Kansas City, so they will play two today (game one starts at 2:10). The Orioles trail them by just 1.5 games entering the day, so it is possible that if the Rays lose both sides of the double-header and the O’s win again that the two teams will be tied atop the AL East standings. In that scenario the Orioles would actually have a slightly better winning percentage too.

But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. There will be plenty of time to catch the Rays. For now, the Orioles just need to win the game in front of them. That’s the 7:05 matchup at Camden Yards with Kyle Gibson on the bump.


ESPN Sunday Night Baseball to Emanate from Oriole Park at Camden Yards for First Time in Five Years | ESPN Press Room
In case you missed this little tidbit from the all-star break, the O’s are going to be on Sunday Night Baseball at the end of this month. Not only that, but it’s a home game against the freakin’ Yankees. The juices are already flowing!

Orioles Catcher Adley Rutschman Falling Victim to MLB-Worst Bad Luck |
It’s only his second season in the big leagues, but Adley Rutschman is already one of those players where you assume that if he didn’t swing at a pitch it probably wasn’t worth swinging at. That’s pretty cool.

Leftovers for breakfast | Roch Kubatko
Included are some quick injury updates. John Means threw a bullpen session. Cionel Pérez is starting a rehab assignment in Bowie today. Woo? Well, the Means news is undoubtedly good. We’ll see about Pérez. The team could certainly use any quality help they can find.

After Double-A promotion, top Orioles prospect Jackson Holliday ‘wouldn’t put it past myself’ to end year in major leagues | The Baltimore Sun
I love the confidence. But it would be an utter shock if Holliday plays in the big leagues this year, not because he isn’t good enough. He probably is. But where is he going to play? The infield is filled to the brim, and that’s before you consider something like a Coby Mayo promotion, which feels a bit more likely than Holliday. My assumption is he will be in Baltimore sometime next summer.

Orioles birthdays

Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!

  • James Baldwin turns 52. He spent part of the 2005 season in Baltimore, appearing in 20 games that was broken into two stints because he was claimed by the Rangers midseason and then reclaimed by the O’s.

This day in O’s history

1960 - Brooks Robinson hits for the cycle and goes 5-for-5 to help the O’s beat the White Sox 5-2.

1996 - Cal Ripken Jr. moves from shortstop to third base for the first time in his consecutive games played streak. Manny Alexander replaces him, it goes horribly, and Ripken is back at shortstop a week later.

2005 - Rafael Palmeiro records the 3,000th hit of his career, a double of Mariners pitcher Joel Piñeiro. A few weeks later he will test positive for steroids, effectively ending his career.