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Franco’s D, Catcher Framing Raising Pitch Counts

Pedro Severino
submitted by Danny Majerowicz (@dmajer347) We are a month into the 2021 Major League Baseball season and the Baltimore Orioles have been, in some ways, a pleasant surprise and even wagerers have taken notice, ready to bet online. John Means pitched his way into Cy Young whispers. Cedric Mullins consistently flashes five tools. Matt Harvey looks closer to the Dark Knight version of himself than the oft-injured version. Such surprises have resulted in a near .500 record—much better than just about anyone expected. And while the first month of Orioles […]

IronBirds C Chris Burgess Excited for 2021 Campaign

Chris Burgess
Get to Know a Guy: Chris Burgess Why should you keep your eye on O’s minor league catcher Chris Burgess this year? Here’s why… In the summer of 2019, while recuperating from a serious bike accident, there wasn’t much I was allowed to do. However, living within walking distance of Ed Smith Stadium, I was able to make it there and keep my spirits up by watching my boys play ball.  Inside those walls was one of the most intriguing and exciting baseball teams I’ve ever seen, the GCL Champion (man […]

O’s Fans Dare to Dream with 2131 Eutaw Street

Austin Hays & Cedric Mullins
Almost 10 years ago, one of the Baltimore Orioles’ marketing department’s most successful campaigns tapped Nick Markakis’s and Adam Jones’s popularity with the home fans as they carried the team back to prominence over the last decade. Using their respective uniform numbers, 21 and 10, and that they played neighboring positions in the outfield in front of Eutaw St., the marketing department came up with the slogan “2110 Eutaw Street” to form a side identity of Buck Showater’s Orioles. This season there are two new Orioles outfielders who are catching […]

O’s Stock Report – April

Ryan Mountcastle watches a pitch
Stock Up John Means Means has carried his success from the end of last season into this year. Entering May 2nd, only three American League starters have better ERAs than Means this season, and his 1.8 bWAR is tops in MLB among pitchers. His 1.70 ERA, .838 WHIP and 27.3 K% are all career highs. Over his last 10 starts dating back to last season, Means is 5-1 with a 1.63 ERA. He has established himself as a true ace. The aspect of Means’ game he’s improved upon the most […]

Is the O’s Pitching…Good?

Bruce Zimmermann pitches
Alright, I know that title sounds a bit outlandish, but hear me out! So far, we obviously know who the Birds’ standouts have been. Matt Harvey took on the Yankees a few nights ago and showed himself like he was prime Dark Night, only giving up one run and one hit over 6.0 innings. That’s something that nobody expected out of Harvey at this point in his career. Watching John Means just feels like it’s unfair. He has a top four ERA in baseball (1.50) and he’s showing off his […]

Baby Birds to Watch in 2021 – Part 2

Blaine Knight pitches.
 See Part 1 here. Dan Hammer I am really intrigued by his athleticism and leg strength when I think about his future. Very strong and powerful lower body athlete with little on-mound experience so far. Only 35 pro innings means we don’t have much to go on although he performed very well in his small sample size. Good heat and he uses a slider and change up to keep hitters off balance. Watching him go through calisthenics and all the pitching exercises and he absolutely tests the pliability of the […]

Baby Birds to Watch in 2021: Part 1

As the Orioles system transitions into one of the best in the league, there are lots of individual performances to examine closely. Some players are new to the Orange and Black. Lots of others have begun their climb up the farm but now have new coaches or instructors to impress. Some are in the early stages of their development and it’s not clear what direction they’re heading as players. 2021 will answer all or most of these questions and will be a welcome continuance of a rebuilding effort that fans […]

How Can Birds Put the “O’s” Back in Offense?

Austin Hays takes a spring training AB
The early returns on the Orioles offense are pretty dreadful. They are currently 12th in the AL in runs scored, 10th in BA, last in OBP, 13th in slugging, last in wOBA and last in wRC+. They also have the AL’s worst walk rate and 3rd highest K rate. Even with offenses down around the league, those numbers are U-G-L-Y! However, does that mean Orioles nation should be in a panic? Well, not really. First of all, you have to remember that the sample size is still small. A few […]

Mullins’ Life as a Lefty Off to a Promising Start

Cedric Mullins in the batter's box.
Last Tuesday on ESR, Rob Shields highlighted how Cedric Mullins has improved since he first came up in 2018. This 2021 season has only been going on for two weeks, but it is already his best yet. My theory is that Mullins’s resurgence is primarily due to changing from being a switch-hitter to only batting from the left side. To test that hypothesis, let’s briefly look at MLB’s history with switch-hitting. Overall, according to The Crawfish Boxes article titled “Flipping the Switch”, the amount of MLB plate appearances taken by […]

Prospects I’m Excited About

Adley Rutschman swings in the batter's box
As the minor league season nears, there are many exciting players I’m looking forward to finally seeing once again. As a crazed O’s minor league observer, I’m eager to get my fix but more than that, I want Orioles fans to see some players who have little or no pro experience. To share some anticipation and maybe initiate some thoughts from other minors-starved Bird fans I thought I’d share some of my own here. I feel strongly that a case can be made for each and every player in the […]

Is Cedric Mullins Here to Stay?

Cedric Mullins in spring training
The Orioles started the season 3-0, but since then, they have only won one out of their last six.  Right now, as is always the case when a team is slumping, the offense and pitching look terrible.  However, there has been one consistent bright spot through the first nine games of the season and that is Cedric Mullins.  Mullins’ slash line is .459/.512/.676/.1188.  He has a 0.8 WAR, which is good for 5th amongst all MLB position players.  He has played good defense to go along with that great hitting.  […]

Baltimore Won’t Get the All-Star Game: Here’s Why

sun setting on brick building and camden yards
When Major League Baseball announced last week it was moving July’s All-Star Game out of Atlanta (more accurately Cobb County, Georgia), I could hear the sound of Orioles fans everywhere licking their lips in anticipation. It was kind of gross. Folks were excited about the prospect of the Midsummer Classic making its long-awaited return to Oriole Park at Camden Yards for the first time since 1993. I just kind of shrugged, because I knew it wasn’t going to happen. I was a bright-eyed four-year-old kid that hot summer night in […]

O’pening Day Starting Lineup for O’s Fans

Fans streaming in the Eutaw Street gate on Opening Day.
For the first time in more than two calendar years, Baltimore is about to celebrate a (somewhat) NORMAL Orioles Home Opener. If you ask 10 different people the best way to go about properly recognizing this festivity, you will probably get 10 different responses. Everyone has their own idea of what constitutes the “best” Opening Day itinerary, and rightfully so. Some may base their plans on past experiences and a desire to recapture former partying glory. Others rely on superstition, recalling their exact location, outfit, and the food and drink […]

Introducing: Mac Sceroler

Mac Sceroler
Those who watched the Orioles-Yankees game last night know that pitching wasn’t exactly there for the Birds, what with the team giving up a grand slam and walking in runs en route to a 7-0 loss. However, there was one pitcher (who happened to be making his Major League debut) who held the fort down quite nicely when nobody else could. That man’s name is Mac Sceroler. Mac came in and got the O’s out of a bases loaded, one-out jam, which he entered with Aaron Judge at the plate. […]

Birds Sweep BoSox in Beantown

Cedric Mullins in spring training
The unstoppable, infallible juggernaut that is the Baltimore Orioles came out of the gate perfect, starting their season with a sweep of the Boston Red Sox which was capped by an 11-3 drubbing on Sunday afternoon.  Each department of the team took the chance to shine throughout the weekend, so much so that it’s nigh impossible to pick one thing to be impressed by more than the others.  As an esteemed Orioles fan and Opinion Haver, I came away from this series at Camden North with three main takeaways: John […]

Give That Fan a Podcast Ep 14 – Opening Day

Give that Fan a Podcast
In this episode, I return from another unanticipated month-long break to celebrate Opening Day by answering some questions from my Twitter followers. I break down the 26-man roster and my expectations for the guys on the team, give a few hot takes, and talk a bit about the future of the podcast and my plan to open it up to other fans. A few over/unders, my favorite for Orioles MVP, possible prospect debuts this season, and my hope for the June first-year player draft are all answered here. Spoiler alert: […]

O’s Look to Improve on Impressive Opening Day Record

Fans streaming in the Eutaw Street gate on Opening Day.
With Opening Day right around the corner, I wanted to look back at this historic day and see how the Orioles have done historically. For starters, the Orioles are 43-24 in the season’s first game since comting to Baltimore in 1954. That’s better than both the Yankees and Red Sox in that time period…just sayin’. The Orioles have played the Yankees then the Red Sox in the last two Opening Day games which obviously is not an easy task. It’s hard to forget the iconic Tommy Milone Opening Day start, […]

Forget Opening Day Lineups, Give Me the CLOSING Day Lineup

Cedric Mullins at bat
With Opening Day a week away, there’s no shortage of lineup predictions hitting the internet. No seriously, even Chris Davis couldn’t swing a bat without barreling a mock lineup around here. Lineup predictions can be fun for sure. But honestly, they’re not really all that interesting. Ceddy or Hays leading off in center? Don’t really care…I’m here for it. Will 2021 ROY Ryan Mountcastle open in left field or at first base? Doesn’t matter…I wanna see it. Right field? Third base? DH? 3/4/5 guys? Any combo is probably gonna get […]

Who is the gOat of the 2010s O’s?

four all star players posed together with stadium crowd in background
submitted by Michael Vetter We all know by now that Nick Markakis has officially retired from baseball, and as my fellow ESR blogger Andrew Stetka eloquently stated, Markakis had an immeasurable impact on the franchise and is surely a top 25 Oriole of all time. He was one of the most recognizable O’s during the 2010s, an era bookended by irrelevancy, yet still full of great accomplishments. After all, the O’s won the most games of any team in the AL from 2012-2016, while becoming AL East champions for the […]

Keegan Akin Should be in Opening Day Rotation

Keegan Akin throws a pitch
Every year, baseball fans across the country discuss the merits of their teams’ Opening Day roster. The reality is that the Opening Day roster matters very little to teams that aren’t really contenders. The roster that you really look forward to as a non-contending team is the post-trading deadline roster. Who has been traded? Who has been brought up from the minors? Who is playing every day? Are you starting to see glimpses of the future that can carry into the next season? Those are the important questions, not “who […]