Gloves are oiled, spikes are tightened and the weather has been cooperative for the county's girls softball teams. Regular season play for most gets underway early next week. Here's a look at the clubs.
One of the Orioles' offseason priorities was improving the club's left-handed relief depth, especially given the prospect of fielding an all right-handed rotation. And now, less than two weeks before the regular season begins, Brian Matusz's nagging back injury has left the Orioles devoid of situational left-handed relief options, and the club is scrambling for bullpen help.
The pending addition of slugger Pedro Alvarez adds another 30-home run bat to the Orioles' power-packed lineup, but it also creates a logjam at the designated hitter spot that the club will have to maneuver around this season. When the Orioles' late attempts to sign a corner outfielder failed — their pursuit of outfielder Dexter Fowler proved unsuccessful last month when he returned to the Chicago Cubs and outfielder Austin Jackson turned down more money to sign with the Chicago White Sox
The Orioles collectively attempted to move on from the Dexter Fowler fiasco on Friday, one day removed from being blind-sided by news that the veteran outfielder was remaining with the Chicago Cubs instead of joining the Orioles. Now, the club is left with more questions than answers.
Orioles pitching prospects Mike Wright and Tyler Wilson are, by the account of both, good friends who have come up through the minor leagues together, and they are locked in competition for what might be one bullpen/spot starter role on the major league pitching staff.
Keeping Chris Davis certainly is a huge step in the right direction, but they are not a measurably better team than they were last season and won't be unless they can find a way to upgrade the starting rotation.
Where the 14 pitchers and two catchers attending the Orioles minicamp were in their preparations varied, but in finding out where they stand in January, manager Buck Showalter said they avoid surprises when they arrive for spring training.
C.J. Riefenhauser will have his first opportunity to impress his new organization next week during the Orioles¿ annual minicamp in Sarasota at the Ed Smith Stadium complex from Monday to Wednesday. Riefenhauser is one of 16 pitchers slated to attend the camp.
The Orioles have officially announced the signing of Korean outfielder Hyun-soo Kim to a two-year, $7 million deal. The pact was agreed to days ago, but was pending a physical, which has since been passed.
It's so clear now. The deal that brought Hall of Famer Frank Robinson to Baltimore — exactly 50 years ago — is the best trade in Orioles history for so many reasons that there really is no room for debate on the subject. On Dec. 9, 1965, the Orioles sent starting pitcher Milt Pappas, reliever Jack Baldschun and outfielder Dick Simpson to the Cincinnati Reds for a former National League Rookie of the Year and MVP who would immediately lead the club to its first World Series title.
New Orioles slugger Mark Trumbo has played his entire major league career out west ¿ he previously played for the Angels, Diamondbacks and Mariners ¿ but he believes he will make the adjustment to the American League East just fine.
It's perfectly fair to wonder whether the deal the Orioles just made to acquire outfielder/first baseman Mark Trumbo from the Seattle Mariners will reduce the club's sense of urgency to re-sign free agent Chris Davis.
To pinpoint exactly when the Orioles' 2015 season veered off the tracks and a 96-win division champion became an also-ran, you first have to go back to before the calendar flipped. In early December, three key 2014 Orioles officially signed lucrative four-year deals with other teams. In each instance, executive vice president Dan Duquette had an explanation for letting the player walk.
Orioles center fielder and team leader Adam Jones has said repeatedly that he will make his opinions known to management and ownership on what he would like to see happen this offseason. On Thursday, while holding court with reporters, he was asked specifically about his feelings toward slugger Chris Davis potentially leaving the team after four-plus seasons as an Oriole. In his typical style, Jones didn't shy away, calling Davis "probably the highest priority" for the Orioles.
When the Houston Astros beat the Seattle Mariners early Tuesday morning, the Orioles' pursuit of the 2015 playoffs officially ended after weeks of sputtering and hoping. With that elimination comes the reality that this Orioles club likely will undergo drastic changes in the next few months.
As the Orioles play the neighboring Nationals this week, hundreds of thousands are expected to flock to Washington, D.C. for Pope Francis¿ first visit to U.S. soil as head of the Roman Catholic Church.
An Orioles team muddling below .500 with just 20 games left in the regular season -- still six games back of the second American League wild-card spot -- took two of three from a Royals team with the best record in the AL this weekend at Camden Yards.
I might from Boise, Idaho, a town hours and hours away from the nearest pro baseball team-glancing at a map I'd say the Seattle Mariners are the closest I could get to a hometown team-but I was raised by a rabid Dodgers fan.
Catcher Matt Wieters (right hamstring) ran the bases Monday and reported no problems. Assuming he is pain-free Tuesday, he could play against the New York Mets, either at catcher or designated hitter. He hasn't played since leaving against the Seattle Mariners on Aug. 11 with the strain.
Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette and manager Buck Showalter tried again to justify the club's offseason decision-making during a special Q&A session for the team's best customers Saturday afternoon. But it was hard to do that without leaving the impression that the same kind of thing is going to happen several times over this coming winter.