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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are going to play the Orioles

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The Grapefruit League season starts later this week, but first, the Orioles will play a couple of games against themselves, including one today. In today's links, Bourn arrives again, a good O's deal and a "bad" one, and more.

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Hello, friends.

There are now 41 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day. This number was worn most recently in the 2016 season by both Ariel Miranda and Tommy Hunter, and has also been worn by Orioles luminaries such as Steve Trachsel, Jeff Tackett, and Don Aase. Luminaries may be a bit of a stretch.

One thing that makes today remarkable is that players in Orioles uniforms will be playing baseball. Sure, it's only going to be an intrasquad game, which of course doesn't count even in the exhibition standings that themselves do not count. But it's something! No, it won't be televised or on the radio. It won't matter much at all. It'll be happening, though, and another one will happen tomorrow before the real fake baseball games begin on Friday afternoon. Hopefully nobody gets hurt.

Do you think the Orioles have any more news to make this spring? It's been a lot of minor league signings so far and the trade for Vidal Nuno. They still seem to want to get the band back together, even people like Michael Bourn who was only part of the band for a month last year. Bourn only got a minor league contract, but maybe he'll factor into the competition as spring goes along. And until somebody else signs Matt Wieters, some part of me kind of expects the Orioles will end up signing him even though that's probably not even a good idea.

Let's hit the links.

Around the blogO'sphere

Always looking for value, Dan Duquette adds two veterans to Orioles roster - CBSSports.com
Often, national baseball writers who parachute in to talk about the Orioles don't know what they're talking about, but this article about the acquisition of Nuno and signing of Bourn is an exception to that.

Orioles notes: A deep crop of optionable arms in Baltimore and minor leagues - Baltimore Sun
Whether even one of those optionable arms has any value to the major league whatsoever is a question that remains to be answered, but there's no doubt there are several of them.

Notes on Nuño, Ondrusek, Davis, Andino and more - School of Roch
Robert Andino says that there will not be a return of Andino at the Movies this season. My girlfriend was sad to hear this. Andino probably won't make the team anyway.

Thoughts on re-signing Bourn and how it affects leadoff spot, outfield, Rickard, Jones - BaltimoreBaseball.com
I think the answer to these is, "It doesn't," "it doesn't," "it doesn't," and "it doesn't." Dan Connolly's article takes a different tack and therefore has more and varied words.

After Yankees reliever lost arbitration case, it got real messy - Steve Melewski
Sometimes even ostensibly objective writers can't resist a little trolling.

The Worst Transactions of the 2017 Offseason | FanGraphs Baseball
Good news: The Orioles trade of Gallardo makes the list from the Mariners standpoint. Bad news: The Orioles signing of Mark Trumbo is even higher up the list.

Here’s Where the Projections Disagree | FanGraphs Baseball
Apparently the ZiPS projection system likes the Orioles more than does the Steamer projection system. Does this amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world? No, probably not.

Birthdays and anniversaries

One lone former Oriole has a birthday today. Reserve outfielder Tom Shopay, who spent some time with the team in 1971, 1972, and 1975-77, turns 72. Happy birthday to him.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: Erotic essayist/memoirist Anais Nin (1903), poet/playwright W.H. Auden (1907), Baltimore-born philosopher John Rawls (1921), singer/pianist Nina Simone (1933), civil rights marcher and current sitting Congressman John Lewis (1940), cinema's Alan Rickman (1946), former University of Maryland basketballer Steve Francis (1977), and actress Ellen Page (1987).

On this day in history...

In 1613, Mikhail I was elected Tsar of Russia, marking the founding of the Romanov dynasty, which would reign for more than three centuries until overthrown by revolution.

In 1804, the world's first self-propelling steam locomotive went on an outing at the Pen-y-Darren Ironworks in Wales.

In 1848, The Communist Manifesto, written by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, was published.

In 1916, following a bombardment of approximately one million artillery shells along a 19 mile front, German forces initiated an attack against French positions outside Verdun. This marked the beginning of the Battle of Verdun, which would rage for nine months, three weeks, and six days before a French victory. Between the two sides, there were about 70,000 casualties per month.

In 1965, Malcolm X was assassinated in New York City.

**

And that's the way it is in Birdland on February 21 - or at least, until something happens in the intrasquad game a little later today. I hope nothing happens, because it won't be good news if there's any news. Have a safe Tuesday.