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Thursday Bird Droppings: The suddenly unbeatable Orioles

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The Orioles are pitching well, hitting well, and winning. Woo! In today's links, the dark side of selling, praise for Kevin Gausman, the plan for Hunter Harvey, and more.

Texas Rangers v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Hello, friends.

Another day has dawned with the Orioles in fourth place in the American League East. They are eight games back of the division-leading Red Sox. The Orioles, after three straight wins, have also pulled themselves to within 3.5 games of the second wild card spot, with five teams to pass to claim it.

It's funny how much better things feel after three consecutive games where there was actually good pitching. Why couldn't it have been like this the whole of the last couple of months? I think we all know the answer, even if we don't want to admit it.

Fun as the Rangers series has been so far, the O's would have to sweep the whole rest of this homestand just to be at a .500 record. It seems like an unlikely outcome, especially with Wade Miley pitching tonight and Ubaldo Jimenez pitching tomorrow. That will surely put this burst of optimism to rest. Enjoy it while it lasts, though.

If you haven't done so yet, check out Tyler Young's recap of last night's win over the Rangers, and don't forget to vote in the Most Birdland Player poll.

There are now 11 days remaining until MLB's non-waiver trade deadline. There may be activity elsewhere in the league today, but I doubt the Orioles will do anything quite yet... especially not if they keep winning.

Around the blogO'sphere

Orioles Adam Jones wins Heart and Hustle award | MLB.com
In case you needed a reminder, Adam Jones is the best.

Dismantling core of bullpen with rotation in disarray would leave Orioles in pitch-dark (Baltimore Sun)

Peter Schmuck wants to make sure that everybody knows that if the Orioles do trade Zach Britton and/or Brad Brach, they will be in a dark place.

Notes on Britton, trade rumors, Harvey, Flaherty and Castro - School of Roch
Hunter Harvey is still alive and still pitching! The Orioles even have a plan for him.

Gausman didn't just throw well - he pitched (Baltimore Baseball)

Huh, somebody should have tried telling him to do that sooner.

Orioles announce fan contest leading up to franchise's 10,000th home run (Baltimore Sun)

If you correctly guess who hits the home run, you can win free Orioles tickets, so what do you have to lose?

Yankees provide Orioles with precedent for what to target in trades for top relievers (Baltimore Sun)

Although if you think that the Orioles are going to get what the Yankees got last year for either Aroldis Chapman or Andrew Miller, I think you're going to be disappointed.

Birthdays and anniversaries

There are a few former Orioles with birthdays today. They are: Poor baserunner Alexi Casilla, spring training home run champion Jake Fox, 1999-2000 catcher Charles Johnson, and 1995 bullpen guy Mark Lee.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: Macedonian conqueror Alexander the Great (356 BC), genetics founder Gregor Mendel (1822 AD), baseball Hall of Famer Heinie Manush (1901), novelist Cormac McCarthy (1933), longtime Maryland senator Barbara Mikulski (1936), guitarist Carlos Santana (1947), actor Omar Epps (1973), actress Judy Greer (1975), and dancer/actress Julianne Hough (1988).

On this day in history...

In 1592, a force of invading Japanese captured Pyongyang in Korea, though they did not hold the city for long.

In 1807, a Frenchman named Nicephore Niepce was given a patent by Napoleon for his Pyreolophore device, the world's first internal combustion engine. It powered a boat upstream.

In 1903, the Ford Motor Company shipped its first automobile.

In 1969, the crew of Apollo 11 made the first successful manned landing on the surface of the Moon, with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin becoming the first humans to walk on its surface.

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And that's the way it is in Birdland on July 20 - or at least, until something happens later, which it likely will, since the Orioles are finishing their series against the Rangers tonight. Have a safe Thursday. Go O's!