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Checking in with O’s prospect Gunnar Henderson (with video)

Like all professional baseball players right now, O’s prospect Gunnar Henderson is not playing in any games or getting any needed at-bats. This was slated to be his first full pro season after the Orioles drafted him last June. The O’s selected Henderson with the first pick of the second round, No. 42 overall, out of Morgan Academy in Selma, Ala. He was a two-sport

Orioles announce refund policy for games impacted by coronavirus

The Orioles today announced a policy for fans who held tickets to Orioles home games in the 2020 season through May 31. Fans can get a 125 percent ticket credit for any home games through 2022 or can receive a full refund. “We certainly recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic has created great hardships for many families and businesses. The Orioles will also offer fans the

Trey Mancini’s update and the latest plan for MLB

Trey Mancini has become the leader of the Orioles, a role he embraces and takes very seriously. Recently, he showed us he could even lead from his hospital bed or his couch at home. Mancini updated all of us in an article in The Players’ Tribune yesterday. He underwent surgery on March 12 to remove a malignant tumor from his colon and confirmed that he’s

Another look at the chances to have a baseball season

The chance that we are going to see something resembling a baseball season in 2020 seems to be getting better. But we still have no idea what that could mean or look like. It seems many plans and options continue to be discussed. Nothing has been settled on. There is nothing that can be settled on at this point. Baseball officials obviously are aware that

A look at two of the new hitting coaches on O’s farm

Had the baseball season started on time, or whenever it does begin in the minor leagues, the Orioles are excited to see several first-year pro coaches at work. There is a heavy flavor of youth, especially among the organization’s hitting coaches. Among the new hitting coaches on the farm as of 2020 are Tim Gibbons at Double-A Bowie, Ryan Fuller at Single-A Delmarva, Anthony Villar

Baseball shutdown impacts O’s rebuilding efforts

So the question has now been asked countless times: Does the shutdown of baseball hurt a rebuilding team like the Orioles? An obvious answer is yes, because young players, especially those in the minors, are not getting at-bats or innings right now. They’re not working with coaches and gaining information from data and analytics. They are not competing against an opponent and learning how doing

On the passing of the guy with the blazing fastball who never made it

We don’t know for sure, since there were no radar guns at the time, but those that saw lefty Steve Dalkowski pitch have said he threw his fastball well over 100 mph. Maybe 110 mph, maybe even 115 mph. Not kidding. His fastball was legendary. But so was his walk total. Dalkowski, once an Orioles farmhand, died recently at 80. Sadly, he died due to

McDonald shares insights on Ripken, Rutschman, broadcasting and more (with video)

So I was at it again yesterday, recording another Zoom video interview. That’s three now with a few more coming. Hopefully, our readers here are enjoying the interviews and stories. Today’s chat, with former Orioles pitcher and current MASN broadcaster Ben McDonald, featured some great insights and stories. Fans have been thrilled to have Big Ben back with the organization the last few years. He

Which player was most important/significant in O’s history?

You could argue for hours which Oriole is the best of them all since the team arrived in Baltimore in 1954. Several players should get legit consideration. But for me, and today’s blog, I asked myself this question: Who is the most important and significant player in Orioles history? Again, several worthy candidates. But my choice is Frank Robinson. All teams want to be able

Baysox GM on shutdown, the 2015 champs and more (with video)

A lot of Orioles fans may not know Brian Shallcross’ name. He is the general manager of the Double-A Bowie Baysox. This former William and Mary kicker has been with Bowie since 2003. He’s one of the good guys that works hard, most of the time behind the scenes, to keep his organization humming. The Baysox have a first-rate staff and they love their fans

Notes on a simulation sweep, KBO starting up and more

So much for that. We had a 12th seed over a fifth seed in the opening round of the 32-squad MLB Dream Bracket. The fifth-seeded all-time Orioles were swept in four straight games by the No. 12 all-time Houston Astros. I recently wrote about how this simulation tournament worked here. So in the simulation, a team of Birds that included Cal Ripken Jr., Brooks Robinson,

Farm instruction during shutdown spans countries, languages

Recently in this space, I wrote about how the Orioles minor league staff was keeping in touch with farm players, often through Zoom videos. They have been working with and instructing players on a variety of aspects of the game. One of the coaches taking part in the videos is 28-year-old Patrick Jones, one of the organization’s first-year coaches. Before the season was put on

How would an all-time Orioles team fare in simulation?

How would an all-time Orioles team do against all-time teams from the rest of Major League Baseball? We’re about to find out through the magic of game simulation. Obviously, they can’t actually take the field! MLB, in conjunction with Out of the Park Baseball, on Thursday unveiled the MLB Dream Bracket with the tournament to begin Monday and Tuesday. The MLB Dream Bracket is a

O’s farm pitcher Gray Fenter remembers his big 2019 season

His last start of an outstanding 2019 season never made it into his final season stats. That’s because it was a postseason start. But in a season when right-hander Gray Fenter reminded the organization why he got an overslot draft bonus, it was a gem. In a best-of-three South Atlantic League playoff series against Hickory last September, Single-A Delmarva faced a must-win Game 2. Fenter

A tale of two college kids, the O’s, football and a lost weekend

The Orioles, since their first season in 1954, have won 100 or more games five times. The first four times they did so, they made the World Series, even though they lost three times. The fifth time they did so, they didn’t even make the playoffs. The 1980 Orioles went 100-62 but finished second in the American League East, three games behind the New York

Alex Cobb in radio interview: “I just want to go play”

Orioles right-hander Alex Cobb made just three starts last year due to injuries, and he’s hoping the coronavirus pandemic won’t keep him from seeing the mound this year. Cobb was a guest on the “Vinny and Haynie Show” on 105.7 FM The Fan on Tuesday and said he hopes to get back to playing as soon as possible. “As a player, at this point, even

Steve Pearce had a nice run with the Orioles (plus other notes)

He often did things with little fanfare. He just wanted to play hard, give his all and see his team win. But there are no more baseball wins in the future for former Oriole Steve Pearce. He announced his retirement in a rather understated way. Boston radio station WEEI was replaying Game 1 of the 2018 World Series Monday night and had Pearce on as

Camden Yards on display in new MLB YouTube series

We know that Camden Yards is “the ballpark that forever changed baseball” when it opened for business. The first game was played there on April 6, 1992 when Orioles right-hander Rick Sutcliffe pitched a complete-game five-hitter. The Orioles beat Cleveland 2-0 in a game that took just 2 hours, 2 minutes. After the opening of Oriole Park, the era of the cookie-cutter symmetrical stadium gave

Cooking with the Orioles

A few days ago in this space, Orioles director of player development Matt Blood explained how players and coaches on the O’s farm are keeping active and trying to improve themselves in various ways during the shutdown of baseball. Much of this is happening via video chats on Zoom. “As a group, we’ve had Zoom calls on just about everything there is to have a

What makes for good baseball or sports viewing right now?

At a time when there are no live games to watch, what are baseball fans and our blog readers doing to get a sports fix? Have you found something fun to watch involving sports or the Orioles that you stumbled upon? If yes, feel free to share with all of us today. Maybe we’ll learn something or find something to enhance our stay-at-home viewing options.

Now pondering the Arizona/Florida plan

Earlier this week, we discussed the Arizona plan in this entry. Now there is a Arizona/Florida plan, according to a report yesterday by USA Today sports. In spring training there is a so-called Grapefruit League and a Cactus League. This plan calls for each of the states to host the 15 teams they currently host in spring and there would, for one crazy year only,

Pick four: The players that mean a lot to you

You know how everyone has a Twitter challenge or question for you these days. I got this one recently. Twice actually. Pick four players who mean and/or meant a lot in your life. I could pick many more than four but the four that jumped out at me were Brooks Robinson, Earl Weaver, Mike Martin and Andy Etchebarren. Brooks is an obvious one. My all-time

Reaching out to non-baseball teams during MLB’s shutdown

Today was supposed to be opening night in minor league baseball. Triple-A Norfolk would be hosting Gwinnett and Double-A Bowie would host Richmond. Single-A Frederick was scheduled to play at Fayetteville and Single-A Delmarva would be hosting Asheville. But when baseball was shut down March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Orioles’ minor league teams had yet to even play exhibition games. There were

Taking a look at the Arizona plan

Say this for officials of Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association: They seem very determined to play baseball in 2020. That may prove to be ambitious, but the will to get it done is clearly there. The plan that ESPN and other outlets reported on yesterday included all 30 teams playing their games in the Phoenix area in parks with no

How it might look in 2020: O’s outfield

Over the next few weeks, let’s take a look at some aspects of the Orioles and how they were shaping up at the time that spring training was halted. Today, a look at the outfield. Earlier, I made my projection for the five-man rotation in this entry and an infield with a roster of seven in this entry. While we may see rosters larger than

Did Rio Ruiz lock down third base gig with strong spring?

Chris Davis was not the only Oriole with a strong spring training at the plate. Third baseman Rio Ruiz had a solid spring and was spraying a few line drives around ballparks all over Florida. Ruiz led the club in hits in spring training, batting .440 (11-for-25) with three doubles, a homer and two RBIs. He posted a .464 OBP and a .680 slugging percentage

Take this Orioles quiz

Let’s have some fun today with a pop quiz. OK, this is not School of Steve, but it still could be fun. I’ll throw out 10 questions. To me, a few are somewhat easy, but most are not. I don’t provide any multiple answer questions, so you have to come up with the answer on your own. If you don’t know the answers, don’t fret.

Chris Davis had a strong spring, but what could it mean now?

It was during a radio broadcast of the “Orioles Hot Stove Show” on 105.7 The Fan in late January when Chris Davis first revealed what he did this winter that could help him hit come summer. He got bigger. To say the least, many were skeptical when they heard that. The revelation came after Davis said that he did not make any swing changes over

Providing a draft ranking and a Palmer take

At a time when we hope, but don’t know for sure, that there will be a baseball season, we do know for sure there be a First-Year Player Draft. The draft is going to be held, although we don’t yet know for certain if it will be limited to five rounds. But it may be just five. At a date yet to be decided -

Revisiting the trade of Manny Machado

When the 2018 season started, the Orioles were trying to make one last playoff run with an opening day roster that included Manny Machado, Adam Jones, Chris Davis, Jonathan Schoop, Trey Mancini, Dylan Bundy, Andrew Cashner, Alex Cobb, Kevin Gausman, Brad Brach and Darren O’Day. Two years previously, they made the American League wild card game, losing in extra innings in Toronto. But in 2017,

A look at games possibly being played without fans

It’s becoming increasingly apparent that we may see at least some Major League Baseball games this summer with no fans. It will remind the Orioles of their 8-2 win over the Chicago White Sox on April 29, 2015. No fans were allowed in Camden Yards, but a game went on. The city of Toronto yesterday banned public events through at least June 30. Is that

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