Mailbag leftovers for breakfast

felix bautista grey

The interest in the Orioles can’t always be confined to one mailbag entry. There’s some spillover that must be cleaned up.

Think of this space as aisle 5.

Here’s the remainder, along with a reminder that my mailbag parts ways amicably and yours is fired.

Where is Félix Bautista rehabbing?
I’m told he’s rehabbing at the spring training complex in Sarasota, but he’ll be in the Dominican Republic for Tuesday’s unveiling of the new state-of-the-art academy.

Are there any MLB teams not linked to a trade for Dylan Cease?
I like how you emphasized “MLB.” Just to be clear that you weren’t referring to the Northwoods League. It isn’t every team in the majors, but it’s more than a half-dozen, right? And yes, the Orioles are talking to the White Sox about him. Why is this treated like breaking news? And are they reportedly the “favorites” simply because they have the most prospects to offer?

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Extra Orioles mailbag questions

Cedric Mullins run orange home

Leftovers aren’t just for the days after Thanksgiving.

I had some extra questions in last week’s mailbag. I’d prefer green bean casserole, but maybe later.

The portion is modest, unlike your server. Just a couple handfuls of inquiries that didn’t make the first one.

Also, my mailbag serves homemade stuffing and your mailbag uses a box that expired three years ago.

Who will be the top two Orioles in stolen bases in 2024 and who will get the most innings at third base?
Two questions packed into one. Sort of like a casserole. I can’t make bold predictions without knowing the Opening Day roster. Jorge Mateo and Cedric Mullins were 1-2 this season, but Mateo appeared in 116 games. I wouldn’t expect the same in 2024. The second part is easier because I can just choose between Gunnar Henderson and Jordan Westburg. I’ll get back to you.

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Because You Asked - Frozen Empire

Heston Kjerstad black jersey

My mailbag is getting thick around the waist again. So am I, which prevents me from judging it too harshly.

Rather than let it balloon and risk a rupture, I’ve decided to empty it this morning in the latest sequel to the beloved original in August 2008.

Harder to keep the weight off as we age.

I didn’t burn many calories editing your questions. I might have attached a first name. I might have removed a comma or parentheses. Please don’t contact your lawyer.  

Also, my mailbag plays sweet music and yours has Creed on a loop.

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More Orioles mailbag leftovers

hyde contemplating

The leftover Halloween candy should be the good stuff if you were smart and used the proper strategy. Hand out the filler first from those big variety bags – Whoppers, Sweet Tarts, Dum Dums – and withhold the fun-size Snickers until you run out.

We could debate what’s “fun” about a smaller version, but I’m here to share extras from this week’s mailbag.

Always a sweet treat.

An important reminder: My mailbag turns sugar into muscle and yours turns it into Type 2 diabetes.

Did any Orioles make the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars Game?
We found out yesterday that left-hander Trey McGough was chosen. The Orioles selected him from the Pirates organization in the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 draft. He pitched at Mount St. Mary's University and was recovering from Tommy John surgery when the Orioles got him at the Winter Meetings. McGough allowed three earned runs and struck out 12 batters in nine innings with the Mesa Solar Sox. The game airs Sunday night on MLB Network.

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Leftovers from the Orioles mailbag

Adam Frazier white jersey

Emptying out the mailbag isn’t as easy as it sounds. Questions are missed or held, the latter to keep the post at a reasonable length.

I’m not worried about breaking the internet. Just your spirit.

Here are some leftovers from last week, with a smattering of newbies. Enjoy my disregard for editing. And be aware that my mailbag leads the parade, and your mailbag follows the elephant with a shovel.

Is the Orioles 49-game improvement over two seasons the record now?
The Orioles tied the 1890-92 Cleveland Spiders for seventh, according to STATS. The 1884-86 Detroit Wolverines are first with a 59-game improvement. In more modern baseball times, the 1981-83 Blue Jays improved by 52 games. However, the ’81 season was shortened by the players’ strike that lasted from June 12-July 31.

Is the rotation or bullpen the No. 1 offseason priority?
Don’t know whether the Orioles post official rankings. The business can be conducted simultaneously. Whatever gets done first is first. And bullpens tend to be a little easier based on cost and supply.

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Because You Asked - Expend4bles

John Means

Because my mailbag hates dry heat and cross-country flights, I’m answering more questions today from home and waiting to join the Orioles in Boston.

I go where it goes.

You understand how this works after 15 years. How it’s a sequel to the beloved 2008 original.

You want heavy editing? Go to a movie. I don’t tamper here. We’re crazy with clarity, sinful with style, bold with brevity, loony with length, ga-ga over grammar.

Also, my mailbag expands like a September roster and yours splits like the back of Ye’s jacket.

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Because You Asked - Brave New World

John Means smiling

On Sept. 24, 2014, the Orioles defeated the Yankees 9-5 in the Bronx to move 32 games above .500. They lost their next three, won 1-0 in Toronto and finished the regular season 96-66.

The 2023 edition is 77-47 heading into tonight’s series opener against the Blue Jays at Camden Yards, with a chance to soar 31 games beyond the .500 mark for the first time in nine years.

Can’t clip those wings, though strains happen. And be careful with that back.

I remind myself of this daily as I hoist my mailbag. Lift with the legs, the only exercise they get.

I’m lightening the load by answering a few more questions this morning, the latest sequel to the beloved 2008 original, while my body adjusts to East Coast time.

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Because You Asked - Folie á Deux

Jackson Holliday futures game

The All-Star break didn’t shatter the Orioles’ momentum toward their first playoff berth in seven years.

They are 16-7 in the second half. Their lead over the Rays grew to three games. Their 70 wins matched the Braves’ total yesterday.

Any drama left in the season appears to involve possible promotions, fitting pitchers on the roster who are returning from the injured list, and whether the Orioles win the division and receive a first-round bye in the playoffs.

That last one is a biggie.

If the season ended today, the Orioles would kick back and wait for the winner of the Rays-Astros wild card series. The Rangers would play the Twins or Blue Jays.

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Because You Asked - Across the Spider-Verse


The Orioles might get spoiled with all of these off-days. Two since finishing their homestand on Wednesday.

They left San Francisco yesterday and continue their rare-visit tour with a stop in Milwaukee.

The Brewers swept the Orioles in a three-game set at Miller Park in July 2017, and if you remember that Jayson Aquino started in the series finale, my level of concern for you has grown to the size of Félix Bautista.

More concerning, perhaps, is that Seth Smith led off for the Orioles in the first two games.

This team was in contention going into September?

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Because You Asked - Wicked Prayer

Oriole Park generic

The Orioles are in D.C. tonight for the first of two games in a “beltway rivalry” that is more hype than actual substance.

Sure, it’s fun to beat the team down the road. But players would be stretching the truth like Silly Putty if they claimed to have extra motivation. This isn’t a division series.

There isn’t much of a mailbag rivalry, either. Too one-sided over here.

You have questions. I usually have answers, or at least a level of sarcasm that could distract you.

This is the latest sequel to the beloved 2008 original, and it’s better than any Oscar nominated movie this year. I’m giving you information, opinions, and everything everywhere, all at once.

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Because You Asked - Return to the Blue Lagoon

Kyle Stowers high five gray

The mailbag will be much too heavy to transport down to Sarasota for spring training unless I empty it again.

I’m reluctant to check it with my luggage. I may not get it back until the Winter Meetings.

Here is the latest sequel to the beloved original from 2008. You ask, I answer, you ask again, I answer again. It’s bound to get old one of these days.

This mailbag is edited for profanity only. I removed all the stuff I originally put in there.

Also, my mailbag tans evenly and your mailbag has red blotches.

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