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Matthew Taylor: J. Johnson, Davis and O's still have something to play for

The Orioles and Red Sox wrap up the 2013 regular season with a three-game set at Camden Yards starting this evening. Both teams' regular season fates have been decided, but these remaining games aren't as meaningless as they might seem. (And I'm not talking about the opportunities that Chris Davis has to increase his team records for home runs and extra-base hits, although those matter,

Andrew Stetka: Even in postseason, the game comes first

With the Orioles officially eliminated from postseason contention, it comes as a surprise to some that the baseball playoffs will actually be watchable this October. Sure, it would have been great to see the O's back in the hunt for a World Series like in 2012, but playing five meaningless games at the end of the season sure beats playing 55 of them. I've always

A night of firsts for Jonathan Schoop

Stating that Jonathan Schoop had a good night would be an understatement. As one of the Orioles' top prospects, Schoop was brought up in early September. Tonight, Buck Showalter mixed up the lineup, giving Schoop the start at second base and setting him up to play in his FIRST major league game. From there, the firsts just kept on comin'. In his FIRST major league

Neal Shaffer: Finding positives among O's shortcomings

With last night's loss, the Orioles are officially out of the 2013 playoff picture. Would it be wrong to call that a relief? We've suspected this day was coming for a while. Last Friday's epic 18-inning loss to the Rays basically sealed the deal. That game had all the markings of a last stand and the Orioles, to their credit, did what they do: They

Machado's peers react to his injury (update)

In Monday's series finale at Tampa Bay, Manny Machado suffered a gruesome knee injury while rounding first base. Immediately after being carted off the field in a stretcher, there was an outpouring of support for the O's third baseman. Below are just some of the many tweets from Machado's peers in reaction to his injury. Best wishes out to Manny today for that terrible injury.

Zach Wilt: Already missing Machado

There's no crying in baseball - unless, of course, you're an Orioles fan who watched Manny Machado go down Monday at Tropicana Field. Then crying is completely acceptable. I'm OK admitting that my eyes got a little misty as I watched the Birds' young phenom get carted off the field on a stretcher after twisting his leg on first base. I didn't take the injury

Domenic Vadala: Last hurrah for Roberts?

While the Orioles are still mathematically in contention, I think it's fair to say that their postseason chances have taken a serious hit this past weekend against Tampa Bay. On a side note - and this is something on which I'll spend some time this off season on Birds Watcher - I don't feel that the 2013 Orioles were any worse off than the 2012

Matthew Taylor: Memories made in Boston and beyond

The Orioles' final trip to Fenway Park is in the history books. Those history books already contain several big moments with ties to the current season that occurred on this day. Sept. 20, 2011: The 63-90 Orioles defeat the 88-67 Red Sox by a score of 7-5 as part of a four-game series at Fenway Park. Starter and former Oriole Erik Bedard goes 2 2/3

Andrew Stetka: A look ahead to the O's 2014 rotation

Even though the 2013 regular season is still a little over a week away from its conclusion, it's not too early to start looking forward to the 2014 campaign and what lies ahead. There's always lots of speculation about the construction of a team's 25-man roster and the Orioles will be no different. The difference for the Birds going into next season is that most

Orioles schedule fan appreciation celebration activities

It seems like only yesterday that we were celebrating the Chris Davis grand slam that capped off an opening day victory for the Orioles at Camden Yards against the Twins. How quickly almost six months can pass when you're busy charting victories and significant milestones. But the end of the 2013 regular season is near, and the six-game homestand that begins Sept. 24 against the

Neal Shaffer: Correcting the course

The Orioles beat the Red Sox last night and it's worth noting. The win raises the 2013 record against their hated rivals to 8-6, meaning they've got a good shot at winning the season series. Given that the Sox are running away with the division, that counts for something. The win also leaves the O's just two games back of both Tampa Bay and Cleveland

Zach Wilt: O's playoff fortunes are in their own hands

Could there possibly be a better slogan for the Orioles right now than "Buckle Back Up"? If there is, I can't think of one. The O's are in the driver's seat with 13 games remaining in the 2013 season. They're currently two games back of the second wild card spot and tonight they open up a seven game road trip with three in Fenway Park

Domenic Vadala: Defining success and failure

I live tweet every Orioles game for Birds Watcher, and I monitor Twitter for all things Orioles on a daily basis. (If you're not into Twitter, I highly recommend it.) One thing I gather from seeing the opinions of some Orioles fans is that this season is a complete and utter failure if the team doesn't qualify for the postseason. In a way, I can

Matthew Taylor: After excruciating loss, remembering better times

The Orioles won't win the division this year, but on this day in 1969, they clinched the first American League East title. After a loss to Washington by the defending World Series champion Detroit Tigers gave them the division, the O's went out and beat Cleveland 10-5 for good measure, their seventh win in what would become a season-best eight-game winning streak. The win extended

Andrew Stetka: It's time to burn baseball's unwritten rule book

You hear about it all the time. Baseball's list of unwritten rules is the most discussed thing in the game that doesn't even exist. Most know what rules are on the list. What most don't know is that there is a reason that these rules aren't real. It's because these rules are pointless. Joe Girardi's little tirade on Monday night at Camden Yards brought this

Neal Shaffer: Thinking about Cal Ripken Jr. as O's return to prominence

The other day I got to thinking about Cal Ripken. I've got this old baseball. In great shape, still in the Rawlings box. Model RO-A. "Official American League Baseball" from back when the American and National Leagues were separate entities. "Cushioned Cork Center," it says. Emblazoned with the script signature mark of then-AL president Bobby Brown. I'm not actually sure when or how I got

Zach Wilt: Matt Wieters and the stats that matter

OK, I'll admit it - I'm a bit of a stat nerd. As much as I'd like to, I don't have a scout's eye for the baseball. The numbers help to tell me who's performing well and who isn't and my love of statistics is a big part of the reason I'm obsessed with this game. For instance, Adam Jones' 31-homer, 102-RBI season tells me

Things get heated in the race for the playoffs

At the start of Monday night's game, the Orioles were two games back in the wild card race with the Yankees on their tail, 2 1/2 games back. With the playoff race coming down to the wire, emotions were bound to spark. We saw that happen as Buck Showalter had to be retrained by the umpire while arguing with Joe Girardi before the second inning

Domenic Vadala: Do the Orioles embrace winning?

I read an article in USA Today last week about the Pittsburgh Pirates and how they clinched their first non-losing season in 20 years. For beginners, hats off to them. That's a feeling with which Orioles fans can certainly identify after last year, although the Orioles' streak was halted before it reached 20 - or 15 for that matter. For the most part, I feel

Matthew Taylor: A history lesson of hope and uncertainty

Call it a baseball revival. Long-suffering franchises are seeing the light after extended periods of darkness. But after the emotion of the moment passes, will fans keep the faith? The Orioles entered the winning tent last year after 14 consecutive losing seasons. The Pittsburgh Pirates followed suit this week, ending their worst-in-any-sport streak of 20 consecutive losing seasons when they won their 81st game. Baseball

Carefirst Adam Jones Fan Challenge

Each year, MASN gives fans the opportunity to challenge Adam Jones to a competition of their choice. After receiving all of the submissions, Jones hand picks three challenges for fans to vote on. This year, fans voted for 7-year old Parker Duke, as he challenged the O's outfielder to a donut-eating contest. The stage was set. With a dozen donuts in hand, Adam greeted Parker

"Hakuna Machado" - what a wonderful phrase!

It's the latest craze! Since Manny Machado has reached the majors, we've seen "Hakuna Machado" signs and shirts in the stands at Camden Yards. Now, thanks to the MLB Fan Cave, Manny's nickname was made official with its own music video. With appearances from J.J. Hardy, Adam Jones, Tommy Hunter, Boog Powell, Jim Hunter, Mike Bordick, Orioles fans and even Machado himself, MLB Fan Cave's

Andrew Stetka: Baltimore's inferiority complex is showing again

It's no secret that Baltimore sports fans have a bit of a chip on their shoulders. Whether you root for the Orioles, or both the O's and the Super Bowl champion Ravens, you know exactly what I'm talking about. The national media doesn't seem to respect the Orioles in the same way as it does some other teams. Part of it could be understood after

Sunday is annual Cardboard to Leather collection at Camden Yards

It's almost fall cleaning time, and the Oriole Advocates are hoping you'll get an early start on your tidying up, helping them and some faraway kids in the process. Sunday's Orioles game against the White Sox marks the annual Cardboard to Leather collection at Camden Yards. Members of the advocates will be stationed at the turnstiles to collect your gently used but usable baseball and

Neal Shaffer: A resolution to embrace city's sports success

It's September again. And Baltimore, let's agree, is a great autumn city. It's harsh in the depths of summer and winter, but fall is our reward for enduring both. This is a place for when things get just cold enough for a sweater at night. That's when we're at our best. In terms of sports, "at our best" in fall also meant, for many years,

Zach Wilt: Focusing on September, and September only

"September's an eternity." - Buck Showalter In a lot of ways, September feels like it lasts forever. As August concludes, so too does my favorite time of year as those seemingly long summer days grow shorter and shorter. Kids are back in school, the Baltimore humidity begins to subside (it will soon, I promise) and I start to brace myself for the cold winter that

September brings new prizes from MASN's "Touch 'Em All" Orioles Rewards

Launched in July, MASN has been rewarding its top fans on social media with exclusive Orioles prizes. By sharing Facebook posts, retweeting our writers, tagging Instagram pictures with #masnOrioles and more, fans have earned points, which at the end of the month, accumulated and earned them signed gear from their favorite Orioles. Well, this month is no different. Signed Adam Jones baseballs and a bat

Domenic Vadala: O's not standing pat in pursuit of postseason

I appeared on a New York podcast late last week to talk Orioles-Yankees going into the weekend. Out of the 45 minutes of questions they asked, two stood out: Will the Orioles make a move before the waiver trade deadline, and which player(s) are you watching the closest as the pennant race heats up and the season winds down. My answer to question one was

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