There are now 48 days until Orioles Opening Day. This number was most recently worn on the O's by the immortal Junior Lake, who the O's received in return for Tommy Hunter. It was most famously worn by Ross Grimsley, who still graces the Baltimore airwaves on 105.7's coverage of the O's from time to time. Not one of the most exciting O's numbers, one must admit, but as the days get closer, we get to more and more interesting Orioles.
It's now been nearly a week since the O's seemed all but certain to be settled on signing free agent starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo. They still haven't signed him despite the fact that the O's don't really have anybody else to sign and Gallardo apparently doesn't really have anybody else looking to sign him. Well, we know the O's don't rush these things, so I guess it's just a matter of waiting to see what happens.
But until that happens, there's not a whole heck of a lot to talk about... except for the traditional topics of our people.
Around the blogO'sphere
Padres, Orioles Discussed Deals For James Shields, Matt Kemp : Sports : Headlines & Global News
This is probably where the whole "they asked for Jonathan Schoop, LOL" thing came from. How would you feel about Matt Kemp in an O's uniform? It ain't 2011 any more - for which the O's are largely thankful.
2016 Orioles Spring Training Preview: Position Battles (Press Box)
Friend of the blog Paul Folkemer breaks down some of the O's position battles still to be settled in spring training. Are you fired up to find out who triumphs between T.J. McFarland and Chaz Roe? Yes, me too.
Steve Melewski: The scoop on Schoop: He could be headed for stardom
He just played in 86 games last season, so let's cool our jets on this one for a minute here. I think Schoop could be a good player for the O's, but one of the stars of the game? That's getting a little carried away.
What an Orioles Package for Jay Bruce Would Look Like - TKB
I can't independently vouch for how connected to reality this blog post happens to be, but one thing you might get from it if you read it is that there's no way the Orioles would or should trade for Jay Bruce, no matter who they do or don't sign in free agency.
MLB win totals: How we see the 2016 season unfolding (USA Today)
There will likely be more thoughts on this blog about this article later today. In the meantime, know that USA Today's "semi-scientific" projections (which seem to be more like a collaborative hot take) put the O's at a 78-84 record. If you're pessimistic about the rotation, that sounds pretty close.
This next one does not involve the Orioles directly, but is nonetheless right in the wheelhouse of one of the regular beats of this blog...
Birthdays and anniversaries
There are three former Orioles with birthdays today. They are: 2015 eight-gamer Jorge Rondon, current MLB Network analyst Eric Byrnes (52 games in 2005), and former O's hitting coach and player Terry Crowley, who I was always told was lucky he was in, ahem, baseball.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Along with those former Orioles, your birthday buddies for this day include: Cadillac/Lincoln founder Henry M. Leland (1843), Brigadier General Anna Mae Hays, the first woman general of the US Air Force (1920), "father of the GPS" Bradford Parkinson (1935), Reading Rainbow and Star Trek: TNG actor LeVar Burton (1957), foul-mouthed tennis player John McEnroe (1959), and actress Elizabeth Olsen (1989).
This was also the birthday of Kim Jong-Il (1941), with whom you may not care to share a birthday. Sorry.
On this day in history...
In 1249, diplomat Andrew de Longjumeau was dispatched by the King of France as ambassador to Guyuk Khan of the Mongol Khaganate. Owing to the travel times of the era, by the time Longjumeau arrived at the court about a year later, Guyuk had been dead since more than six months before Longjumeau left home.
In 1804, the Eastern Shore's own Stephen Decatur led a raid to burn a pirate-held American warship in the First Barbary War.
In 1923, Mr. Howard Carter unsealed the burial chamber of King Tut.
In 1940, the "Altmark Incident" took place in World War II, in which a German tanker, carrying British prisoners of war, was boarded in neutral Norwegian waters by the HMS Cossack. This was technically a no-no, but they freed 299 prisoners anyway. This is the last recorded naval action where a cutlass was used on a boarding party.
In 1968, the first 911 phone service went into place in Haleyville, Alabama.
And that's the way it is in Birdland on February 16 - or at least, unless something happens later. Have a safe Tuesday. Stay warm out there.