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Thursday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles have finally escaped May

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Let’s hope that whatever was wrong with the Orioles in May is left in May. In today’s links, Beef is tenderized, Andino is a bad boy, and Machado keeps on slumping.

New York Yankees v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

Another day has dawned with the Orioles sitting in third place in the American League East. After winning another series in Baltimore against the Yankees, the O’s sit 3.5 games back of the division leader. They have scored the fewest runs of any AL East team. Oh, and don’t look now, but the Blue Jays have crept up to just one game below .500. The Orioles are still closer to last than to first.

At least the Orioles have finally escaped from May, which was something of a month from hell for the O’s. The team went just 12-16 in the month. It could have been worse, to be sure, but it really squelched any enthusiasm that they may have built up from a very hot April. That’s the way it goes.

If you missed Wednesday’s 10-4 win over the Yankees, make sure to check out Stacey’s recap of the game - and don’t forget to vote in the MBP poll! It was a nice win for the team to get some positive movement going again, but it would have felt a lot better if Kevin Gausman didn’t return to his struggles and Manny Machado’s slump didn’t drag on even longer.

Next up are the Red Sox, the team immediately ahead of the O’s in the standings. We’ll find out over the next four days whether anything is better with the Orioles or whether they’re still heading places we don’t particularly want to see them go.

Around the blogO’sphere

Offense comes alive and O's take series with 10-4 win (updated) - School of Roch
If you want to read the post-game answers to questions like, “How satisfying is it to win the series?” and “How nice is it to have Adam back?”, here’s where you should look.

Baltimore Orioles minor leaguer Robert Andino suspended 50 games for positive amphetamine test (ESPN)
Andino will always be a Birdland hero for his destruction of the 2011 Red Sox and it’s a bummer to see the tail end of his career go this way. As my sister says whenever a glass breaks in a restaurant, “Job opening!”

Welington Castillo went to emergency room after ball hit groin, placed on disabled list (Baltimore Sun)
Castillo suffered a testicular injury on the same day that Caleb Joseph suffered one last year - May 30. Castillo’s injury is not believed to be as serious as Caleb’s was. Hope he’s got some ice either way.

For the Orioles, the recent hitting and pitching stats are equally bad - Steve Melewski
Similar to what I wrote in this space two days ago, when even Steve Melewski is putting out headlines like this, things have really gone to a dark place.

Four more strikeouts add to Machado’s prolonged offensive slump (Baltimore Baseball)
Speaking of being in a dark place, Manny Machado is now batting just .205/.286/.405 on the season. Holy mackerel, that’s depressing.

How Baltimore’s Best Hitting and Pitching Prospects Finally Came Good (The Ringer)
I always like when national outlets notice the Orioles. This one is about the different paths that Machado and Dylan Bundy took to finding big league success. Disclosure: The Ringer will soon be run on a Vox Media platform, which owns SB Nation, which owns Camden Chat.

Four friends caught all four homers the Yankees hit against the Orioles Tuesday (Sports Illustrated)
As far as I can tell, this appears to be the same squad that was responsible that one whiny blog post about Adam Jones three years ago. I suppose that, naively, I like to imagine home run balls going to somebody who will have it as a unique memory - and not to the type of person who catches so many home run balls that they bring a decoy ball along to throw back if they catch a homer from the other team.

Birthdays and anniversaries

On this day in 1975, the Orioles were no-hit by Nolan Ryan, then of the California Angels - his then-record-tying fourth career no-hitter.

One lone former Oriole has a birthday today: the late Marylander Ray Moore of the 1955-57 O’s rotations.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury (1563), Plessy v. Ferguson dissenting Justice John Marshall Harlan (1833), actor Morgan Freeman (1937), fashion personality Heidi Klum (1973), irony misidentifier Allanis Morisette (1974), and funny lady Amy Schumer (1981).

Harlan was the lone dissenting justice in Plessy in 1896, which established the “separate but equal” doctrine of segregation in the United States of America. One passage from his dissent to that ruling:

We boast of the freedom enjoyed by our people above all other peoples. But it is difficult to reconcile that boast with a state of the law which, practically, puts the brand of servitude and degradation upon a large class of our fellow-citizens, our equals before the law. The thin disguise of 'equal' accommodations for passengers in railroad coaches will not mislead any one, nor atone for the wrong this day done.

On this day in history...

In 1215, Genghis Khan’s Mongols captured Zhongdu (present day Beijing) from the reigning Jin Emperor, Xuanzong. The Mongols later supplanted the Jins.

In 1812, President James Madison asked Congress to declare war on the United Kingdom. That Congressional vote was America’s first ever declaration of war, and remains the most narrow vote to declare war in the country’s history, with the House approving by a 79-49 margin and the Senate by a 19-13 margin.

In 1918, in World War I, American forces engaged the Germans in the Battle of Belleau Wood, a battle which would rage for most of the rest of the month and is still a point of pride for the US Marine Corps.

In 1967, the Beatles released their album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

In 1974, the journal Emergency Medicine published an issue which promulgated the Heimlich maneuver for rescuing choking victims.

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And that’s the way it is in Birdland on June 1 - or at least, until something happens later, which it certainly will, because the Orioles are going to be playing the Red Sox. Have a safe Thursday. Go O’s!