It’s finally here, Birdland! The 2021 season is finally here, as pitchers and catchers have officially reported to Ed Smith Stadium in beautiful, sunny Sarasota, FL, for spring training.
Today was the first squad workout, and with that brought some interesting notes. So, with that being said, The Baltimore Battery brings to you SpringNotes! It’s like SparkNotes, but for Orioles spring training!
Matt Harvey deal is official:
The only man to not participate in today’s workout was none other than “The Dark Knight” himself, Matt Harvey.
The reason, according to Orioles manager Brandon Hyde, was due to Harvey completing his required physical. Harvey passed his physical, and he will report tomorrow wearing No. 32.
Harvey’s deal is now officially official. It’s a minor league deal that will pay Harvey around $1 million if he makes the team out of spring. He, along with Félix Hernández, Wade LeBlanc, Jorge López, and a handful of others, will look to fill the backend of the starting rotation.
A list of jersey numbers was reported earlier today by MASN’s Roch Kubatko. Let’s go through some of them!
Newly signed shortstop, Freddy Galvis, will wear former O’s shortstop J.J. Hardy’s No. 2. Rio Ruiz was supposed to switch to No. 2, but he will wear No. 14 as he has for the past two seasons.
Newly acquired infielders Yolmer Sánchez and Jahmai Jones will wear No. 13 and No. 78, respectively. Utility infielder, Pat Valaika, will switch from No. 74 to No. 11 this season.
Son of Orioles legend Cal Ripken Jr., Ryan Ripken, will wear No. 99, and the No. 2 overall prospect in all of baseball, Adley Rutschman, will wear No. 96.
As mentioned before, Matt Harvey will wear No. 32, and “King” Félix Hernández will wear his usual No. 34.
Brandon Hyde on Fangraphs:
As almost all of us know by now, the popular baseball site, Fangraphs, released their 2021 projections, along with their playoff odds for each team entering 2021. And, well, they gave the O’s zero chance.
No, literally. They gave the Birds a 0.0% chance to make the postseason this year, and the Twitterverse went wild. Even the official Baltimore Orioles Twitter account joined in with a tweet of their own in response.
The website ultimately responded to the online uproar that they started by making a, well, let’s just say updated version of their projections.
I think that all of Birdland can agree that the 2021 Orioles aren’t going to be competitive. But, to give teams like the Rockies (0.1%), Pirates (0.4%), and Rangers (0.8%) a slim chance to make it and not give the O’s anything is pretty crazy.
Brandon Hyde was asked about this projection during his Zoom conference earlier today, and his response was perfect.
“The least of my concerns. I’m not worried about an article.”O’s manager Brandon Hyde
Let’s hope Hyder and the rest of the Birds can use this as a little motivation this season. If you want to listen to the full Zoom conference, you can click the link below.
That’s going to do it for this first edition of SpringNotes 2021! If you like what you read, please feel free to share with your friends and on social media! You can also follow The Baltimore Battery on Twitter and Facebook for more Orioles content!