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Thursday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are cutting some excess baggage

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The Orioles have pared down a few more players from their spring roster. In today's links, Dariel Alvarez will try pitching, Jason Garcia heads to the minors, and Jonathan Schoop takes a trip down memory lane.

Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, friends.

There are now 25 days remaining until Orioles Opening Day. This number is currently in use by Hyun Soo Kim, and in the past was used by a lot of Orioles, including Rafael Palmeiro, Rich Dauer, and Moe Drabowsky.

The Orioles are continuing to pare down their spring roster, sending out a few players at a time who were obviously never going to make the big league club out of spring training. I mean, let's get serious here. Jason Garcia wasn't going to be on the MLB squad even if he was perfect every time out there - which he wasn't. He looked like the same old Jason Garcia. And this year he'll get to be that same Garcia at Norfolk instead of Bowie.

Today happens to be an off day for the Orioles, so there will be nothing happening, not even a fake game. During yesterday's MASN broadcast, they claimed that the facilities would be locked up and no one could even get into the weight room on their day off. I don't know about that, but it's what they said.

On the bright side, if you want to watch some Orioles playing baseball today, you will still get a chance to do so. The Dominican Republic's first game in the WBC is getting underway tonight at 6pm on MLB Network. You'll be able to watch Manny Machado and Welington Castillo in action against Canada.

Around the blogO'sphere

Orioles continue first round of camp cuts, including Jason Garcia, Parker Bridwell - Baltimore Sun
It was going to be a strange set of circumstances that might lead to Bridwell making the Opening Day roster, too. And sure enough, he's off to minor league camp for the balance of spring.

Dariel Álvarez agrees to start pitching program (and more notes) - School of Roch
It seems that Alvarez realized the writing was on the wall after being included in the very first round of cuts and so now he is going to try to undergo the reliever conversion. Well, good luck.

The ongoing tale of three once highly ranked O's prospects - Steve Melewski
One thing happening in this article is that Melewski is offering the claim that Christian Walker and Dariel Alvarez were once highly ranked O's prospects, which is not a claim that has much support in observable reality.

Jonah Keri's spring training tour: Projection smashing Orioles defying the odds - CBSSports.com
Keri is one of the many baseball pundits who doesn't seem to know what to make of the Orioles, although he tries harder than most in an effort to understand them.

Baltimore Orioles star Manny Machado made father proud by picking Dominican Republic (ESPN)
There may have been a very, very similar article to this in yesterday's Bird Droppings. ESPN, you were a day late to this party! So was the Sun, it seems.

Jonathan Schoop recalls first taste of Classic | MLB.com
Schoop was still a minor leaguer the last time the WBC came around. Now he's heading into his fourth big league season as he participates in this year's edition.

Birthdays and anniversaries

One lone former Oriole has a birthday today: 2011 LOOGY Clay Rapada.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: explorer Amerigo Vespucci (1454), Stanford University founder Amasa Leland Stanford (1824), space pioneer Yuri Gagarin (1934), actor Oscar Isaac (1979), and rapper Bow Bow (1987). Not really a big day for birthdays. Well, you've also got George Lincoln Rockwell, the founder of the American Nazi Party (1918).

On this day in history...

In 1847, American forces launched the first-ever large-scale amphibious assault in the country's history, landing for the Siege of Veracruz during the Mexican-American War.

In 1933, President Franklin B. Roosevelt submitted the Emergency Banking Act to Congress. This was the first of his New Deal programs.

In 1959, the Barbie doll debuted at the American International Toy Fair in New York.

In 1982, a group known as the Krononauts held an event in Baltimore in which they invited any future time travelers to come and meet one another.

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And that's the way it is in Birdland on March 9 - or at least, unless something happens later, which, since it's an off day, hopefully it won't. Have a safe Thursday.