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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Another unbelievable win for the Orioles

For the second straight game, the O’s were trailing in the ninth. For the second straight game, they ended up in the win column.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

If you were wondering whether the Orioles would suffer any kind of hangover last night after their raucous, postseason-clinching celebration on Sunday, don’t know this team.

The O’s pulled off yet another improbable victory in a season chock-full of them, a stunning 8-7 victory to open a three-game series in Houston. The game could have gone wrong in so many ways, and almost did — from four relievers giving up runs to turn a late-inning lead into a deficit, to a crucial O’s run getting thrown out at the plate, to the normally sure-handed Ramón Urías starting the ninth inning with an inexplicable error — and yet the Orioles, as they almost always seem to do, persevered. Cedric Mullins’s dramatic three-run homer in the ninth off shutdown closer Ryan Pressly flipped the game completely on its head and delivered the Birds a thrilling, last at-bat win. You can read much more about the crazy night in Houston in Alex Church’s game recap.

It’s incredible. You just cannot count this team out. Who would do such a thing? That would be like somebody starting to write Bird Droppings before the game ended, typing up three paragraphs about how the Orioles lost, and then having to hastily rewrite the entire thing when he was proven to be a complete and utter fool. Can you even imagine?

The Orioles have now gone 88 consecutive series without being swept. More importantly, they gained a half-game over idle Tampa Bay, putting them 2.5 in front in the AL East, and whittled their magic number to clinch the division to nine. The Birds probably can’t rely on any outside help to cut down that magic number, as the Rays will will spend the next three days likely beating up on the hapless Angels, so the O’s will just have to keep winning.

Lucky for us, they’ve shown they’re more than capable of doing so.


Means holds Astros to one run, Mullins hits go-ahead homer in ninth for 8-7 win - School of Roch
No other Orioles team in my lifetime has ever made me exclaim “I can’t believe that just happened!” so frequently. At least not in a good way.

Jon Meoli: Brandon Hyde’s reward for the Orioles’ turnaround is a win ‘he should take all the credit for’ - The Baltimore Banner
If you listen to people on Twitter, Brandon Hyde is a doofus who doesn’t know how to make a lineup. Let’s all point and laugh at those people. Hyde has done a masterful job with a talented roster and deserves every bit of appreciation for the club’s turnaround.

Orioles rookie Heston Kjerstad proud to ‘earn my stripes’ with champagne and condiment shower to celebrate first homer - Baltimore Sun
Kjerstad was doused with a “disgusting concoction” of beer, Chick-fil-A sauce, balsamic vinaigrette, and assorted other condiments in the O's clubhouse. Eh. Still not as bad as eating at McDonald’s.

Minor Monday: An excellent start in Orioles’ system for Horvath -
Gunnar Henderson has raised the bar for what a second-round Orioles draft pick is capable of. Mac Horvath, so far, is trying his best to keep pace.

Orioles CEO Angelos pledges 30 more years for the team at Camden Yards - The Baltimore Banner
Instead of just “pledging” it, how about, you know, actually signing the lease?

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! And happy 25th birthday to current O’s lefty DL Hall, who has emerged as one of the Birds’ most-used relievers down the stretch and earned the win in the club’s walkoff win on Sunday. Four ex-Orioles were born on this day as well: infielder Danny Valencia (39); first baseman Nick Johnson (45); All-Star closer Randy Myers (61); and the late righty Bob Turley (b. 1930, d. 2013), a member of the inaugural 1954 Orioles and their All-Star representative that season.

On this date in 1963, the Orioles played a game in Los Angeles that had a paid attendance of just 476. It was a Thursday afternoon game, a makeup of a rainout from two days earlier, and apparently did not bring out the crowds in droves. The Angels beat the O’s, 7-2.

And on this day in 1998, Cal Ripken Jr. extended his Iron Man record by playing his 2,632nd consecutive game, going 0-for-4 in a win over the Yankees at Camden Yards. Little did anybody know it that night, but it would be the final game of The Streak. Cal took himself out of the lineup the next day, missing a game for the first time in 16 years.

Random Orioles game of the day

On Sept. 19, 2001, the Orioles lost to the Blue Jays in Toronto, 4-1, with Hall of Famer Roy Halladay dominating them for 11 strikeouts and just one run in seven strong innings. O’s starter Calvin Maduro gave up four runs and didn’t get out of the fifth. It was the Orioles’ 10th straight loss and 16th of their last 17, but baseball win-loss records were an afterthought at that moment, as it was just the Orioles’ second game back from a week-long MLB hiatus following the 9/11 terrorist attacks eight days earlier.