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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles are back in third place

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The Orioles were winners in the early hours, moving up in the standings as a result. In today's links, Hardy's return delayed, Britton waits for more chances, and more.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Seattle Mariners Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, friends.

Another day has dawned with the Orioles in third place in the American League East. Yes, they passed the Rays yesterday. Woo! More importantly, the Orioles pulled ahead of two teams in the wild card chase with Monday's win. They now sit two games behind the second wild card team, the Angels, with a total of three teams to pass to claim a playoff spot with 43 games still to play.

If you had to go to sleep before the O's 11-3 win over the Mariners ended in the wee hours Tuesday morning, that's OK. You can find out everything you missed in my recap of the game. Don't forget to vote in the Most Birdland Player poll!

Monday's win was a nice one indeed, although it's not going to mean much in the grand scheme of things if the Orioles turn around and lay a clunker out west much later tonight. They have a chance to get back to .500 and even, depending on what happens with games elsewhere, get as close as within one game of a wild card spot.

The Mariners have now lost five in a row. Nothing personal, but this is the time to kick them while they're down and really help themselves. The Orioles need a winning streak to propel themselves to the top of the pile. That's really all there is to it.

Around the blogO'sphere

Updated Top-10 Prospect Lists: AL East | FanGraphs Baseball
Fangraphs has updated their top prospect lists for the division, including for the O's. Some of them are doing quite well for themselves indeed.

Hardy progressing toward BP as wrist continues to heal - School of Roch
Conveniently for the O's roster, it sounds a lot like J.J. Hardy won't be back until the rosters expand in September.

Orioles continue mediocre play - remain alive in an incredibly mediocre AL Wild Card race (Baltimore Baseball)

Last night's fun as heck win notwithstanding, this article is right on, and I'm not just saying that because I wrote something similar recently.

With season winding down, Orioles closer Zach Britton finding form but no regular workload (Baltimore Sun)

Here's hoping the Orioles go on a long winning streak and give Britton plenty of save chances from here on out.

Birthdays and anniversaries

On this day in 1979, Eddie Murray stole home in the 12th inning of a game, helping the Orioles get a 2-1 win over the White Sox. Mike Flanagan ended up being the winning pitcher.

There are a few former Orioles with birthdays today. If you know any of them, give yourself a cookie. Happy birthday to: 1992 two-gamer Tommy Shields, 1993 short-timer Mark Leonard, and 1993 two-gamer Mike Cook.

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your birthday buddies for today include: French dictator Napoleon (1769), chef/author Julia Child (1912), social psychologist Stanley Milgram (1933), actress Debra Messing (1968), actor Ben Affleck (1972), gold medal beach volleyballer Kerri Walsh Jennings (1978), and actress Jennifer Lawrence (1990).

On this day in history...

In 1057, King Macbeth - yes, that one - was killed in the Battle of Lumphanan, which he fought against Mael Coluim mac Donnchada, the future King Malcolm III.

In 1281, a fleet of Mongols under Kublai Khan, attempting to invade Japan, was destroyed by a "divine wind" (kamikaze, or, then, a typhoon).

In 1843, the Tivoli Gardens opened in Copenhagen, Denmark. This is noteworthy because they are one of the oldest still-intact amusement parks in the whole world.

In 1914, the Panama Canal opened to traffic for the first time, fulfilling my favorite palindrome of all time: A man, a plan, a canal. Panama.

In 1947, India gained its independence from British rule after nearly 190 years of being a colony.

In 1965, the Beatles played a concert in front of almost 60,000 fans in Shea Stadium in New York City, today thought of as the birth of stadium rock.

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And that's the way it is in Birdland on August 15 - or at least, until something happens later, which it surely will, if not until much later since the Orioles are playing out west. Have a safe Tuesday. Go O's!