There are now four days remaining until Orioles Opening Day. The next time I am here for you with news and links from around Birdland, we will be on the first off day of the regular season. How will I begin that post without an Opening Day countdown to break the ice? I've got one week to think about it ... but it'll still be two days 'til we say we're sorry.
Spring training is nearly over. There are three games left to play. The Orioles still have a number of roster decisions to make, several of which have been opened up by the (hopefully) short-term injuries from which Matt Wieters, J.J. Hardy, and David Lough must recover. None of that is going to help with any of the roster crunch in the bullpen or even the starting rotation.
I always wonder what it must be like to be on the fringe in the waning days of spring training, knowing you have an outside chance of making it but you probably won't. Because I'm that kind of nerd, it reminds me of a quote from Chrono Trigger, one of the greatest video games ever made: "The black wind howls. One among you will shortly perish." In the case of spring training, more than one among them will perish from the roster.
Okay, moving right along from that bout of nerdery, let's get to Thursday's news and links from around Birdland...
Rule 5 pick Verrett still impressive, but future with Orioles remains uncertain - Baltimore Sun
I've seen the story written several times now, but I just can't get enough of reading about Logan Verrett's wife Erin searching out a live feed of the Rule 5 draft to find out whether her husband would get picked. And sure enough, he did. That must have been a special moment.
Q&A: MASN Orioles Broadcaster Jim Hunter (Press Box)
The good folks over at Press Box caught up with MASN personality Jim Hunter, who's also about to be the MC for the Orioles home opener, a tradition he's carried on every year since 1997.
Big Brother now catching for the Orioles | Comcast SportsNet Baltimore
This article is not about the distant controlling figure of George Orwell's dystopian masterwork 1984, but rather about Ryan Lavarnway, who spent some time connecting with youth with a Big Brothers of America chapter while in college, and has still kept in touch with a couple of those kids even nearly a decade later.
CJ Nitkowski Says The Orioles Big Question Is Which Chris Davis Shows Up " CBS Baltimore
The guys at 105.7 spoke to MLB radio personality CJ Nitkowski about the upcoming O's season, particularly about whether Chris Davis would return to being the Chris Davis who was awesome.
Steve Melewski: An update on the Pat Connaughton situation
It was cool rooting for Pat Connaughton in the NCAA tournament, but one downside (for the O's) of his success there is that now he's going to take the opportunity to explore whether a professional basketball career is in his cards.
There are no living former Orioles with an April 2 birthday. If today is your birthday, you share the day with a variety of people, including rapper Yung Joc, and actors Michael Fassbender, Clark Gregg, and Christopher Meloni. It was also the birthday of a few who have departed this mortal coil: Marvin Gaye, Alec Guinness, Hans Christian Andersen, and, going way back, our possible mutual ancestor, Charlemagne.
On this day in 1976, the O's traded for Reggie Jackson.
And that's the way it is in Birdland on April 2 - at least, unless something changes later. Have a safe Thursday.