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Unusual though it was for Baltimore to endure a significant snow eight days before the start of baseball season, the Orioles say the mid-March storm will not significantly impact their preparations for Opening Day next Thursday.

“Hopefully we’ll have some nice sunshine over the next 24 hours to help melt the snow currently on the field,” club spokesman Greg Bader said in an email.

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He noted that the Orioles first have to prepare the field at Camden Yards for a Sunday doubleheader between Army and Navy.

The Orioles announced Thursday that two-time All-Star second baseman Brian Roberts has been elected to the Orioles Hall of Fame and longtime radio broadcaster Fred Manfra will be inducted as this year’s Herb Armstrong Award winner.

The Wednesday storm dropped between 4 and 6 inches in the city, but with temperatures well above freezing Thursday, the anticipated melt began quickly. Other than a slight chance of snow Saturday night, the National Weather Service doesn’t forecast any moisture for the area through the middle of next week.

The snow might have come too early to mess with this year’s opener against the Minnesota Twins, but that was not the case on Opening Day 2003, when a sudden squall halted play for 13 minutes after Orioles right fielder Jay Gibbons lost a fly ball in the swirling white. The Orioles rallied to beat the Cleveland Indians in 13 innings that day (March 31), so they did not begrudge winter its final breath.

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