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How are former Orioles faring in 2021? A surprising Cy Young candidate and a lights-out closer lead the way.

Roster churn is an inevitable part of sports, and even more so when a rebuilding team like the Orioles is sacrificing the chance to win now for a better chance to win later.

That led to the team’s firesale at the 2018 trade deadline, when the Orioles parted ways with homegrown stars Manny Machado, Jonathan Schoop, Zack Britton, Kevin Gausman and others in return for a crop of talented young prospects, many of whom have yet to make their way to Camden Yards.

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From short-term pieces on a contending team (Nelson Cruz), to once-heralded prospects (Dylan Bundy), to veteran players who came and went as a new regime took over (Hanser Alberto, Jonathan Villar), there are plenty of former Orioles who are still making their mark on Major League Baseball.

Did you know:

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  • The combined 2021 salaries of three active former Orioles — Manny Machado ($30 million), Alex Cobb ($15 million) and Justin Turner ($8 million) — is nearly equal to the Orioles’ Opening Day payroll of $57 million. (The Orioles are paying $10 million of Cobb’s 2021 salary as part of his trade to the Angels.)
  • The combined ERA of former Orioles starting pitchers who are now starting for a different team — Rich Hill, Eduardo Rogriguez, Dylan Bundy, Alex Cobb, Wade Miley, Jake Arrieta, Zach Davies and Kevin Gausman — through the first half of the 2021 season is 4.20. The combined ERA for the Orioles’ starters this season is 6.11, worst in the majors.
  • A theoretical starting lineup of active former Orioles — Manny Machado at third base, José Iglesias at shortstop, Justin Turner at second base, Jonathan Schoop at first base, Yermín Mercedes at catcher, Nelson Cruz at designated hitter, Christian Walker in left field, Mike Yastrzemski in center field and Jonathan Villar in right field — would combine for 11.6 wins above replacement (WAR) as hitters through the first half of 2021, according to FanGraphs. For comparison, the July 11 starting lineup for the American League-leading Boston Red Sox combined for 15.5 fWAR.
  • There are two active former Orioles left-handers named Wade in the National League Central.

Click through the gallery below for a closer look at how former Orioles are faring so far in 2021:

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