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Independence Day Bird Droppings: Still waiting on some Orioles fireworks

The O’s, losers of five of their last six, are in dire need of a jolt.

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Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

Happy Independence Day! If you’re planning to go to a cookout or watch some fireworks — or, for those who are particularly bold, to set off your own — then please enjoy, and try not to blow off your fingers.

If part of your day’s activities involves watching the Orioles in their 1:00 game at Yankee Stadium this afternoon, then I certainly hope they give you a more pleasurable experience than last night’s debacle of a series opener, in which they frittered away a 3-0 lead and ended up losing, 6-3. Andrea SK recapped the frustrating loss.

The Orioles have dropped five of their last six games, and the holes in the roster seem to be growing more prominent. Without an injured Austin Hays and Jordan Westburg, the O’s lineup managed just three runs, and has topped that total just once in the last six games. The Orioles’ unreliable middle relief continues to struggle to hand the ball to the late-inning guys...and last night, even the late-inning guys themselves had an off night, with both Yennier Cano and Danny Coulombe serving up fateful runs. It was a bad scene.

The O’s have six games remaining until the All-Star break. Will they turn things around and build some positive momentum toward the second half, or will they go limping into the break like a team that desperately needs a few days off?


Updating Hays and Westburg injuries, McCann’s return, Rutschman’s selection to Home Run Derby and more - Blog
For now the Orioles are keeping the banged-up Hays and Westburg on the active roster in hopes that they can return soon. Colton Cowser fans, looks like you’re going to have to wait a bit longer for your guy’s MLB debut.

Aaron Hicks returns to New York for first time: ‘A change of scenery has been good’ - The Athletic
Just when you think Yankees fans can’t get any less classy, they loudly booed at a tribute video to Aaron Hicks.

1st-time All-Star Rutschman to tag-team with dad in Derby -
Adley Rutschman’s dad will be his pitcher at the Home Run Derby. Now that the Derby is a timed event and hitters can’t just lay off bad pitches, I feel like there’s more pressure on the pitcher than on the hitter. Good luck, Randy.

Orioles infielder Gunnar Henderson, closer Félix Bautista named American League Rookie, Reliever of the Month
For all the team’s troubles, Gunnar Henderson and Félix Bautista continue to be awesome, and they received their rightful recognition from MLB.

Minor Monday: Norby thinks his numbers can get better -
Connor Norby's stats have been perfectly fine, but in an organization as deep as the Orioles filled with offensive powerhouse infield prospects, he needs to be better than perfectly fine. Norby, at least, think he's capable of it.

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! The only player in O’s history with an Independence Day birthday is right-hander Babe Birrer (b. 1929, d. 2013), who pitched four games for the 1956 Orioles. But it’s also the birthday of longtime O’s majority owner Peter Angelos (94) and former Orioles general manager Jim Beattie (69).

The Orioles’ last win on this date came just last year, when they walked off the Rangers, 7-6, in 10 innings. Trailing by one with two outs in the ninth, the O’s tied the game on Adley Rutschman’s RBI double to force extras, then won it an inning later when Jorge Mateo was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. (A game-winning HBP? Jordan Westburg can relate.) It was the second of what would become 10 consecutive wins for the Birds.

Random Orioles game of the day

On July 4, 1973, the Orioles pulled off a come-from-behind victory over the Brewers at Memorial Stadium, rallying back from a 5-0 deficit by scoring 10 runs in their final three at-bats. The O’s, after getting shut out for five innings by Milwaukee starter Jim Slaton, strung together four straight singles in the sixth to plate three runs, then tied the game in the seventh on three singles and a sac fly. Earl Williams put the Orioles ahead with a two-run homer off Slaton, and after the Brewers tied the game again in the top of the eighth, RBI singles by Rich Coggins and Paul Blair gave the O’s a 10-7 lead they wouldn’t relinquish. (The Brewers didn’t help themselves by committing five errors.) The win improved the Orioles to 40-34, moving within two games back of the AL East-leading Yankees.