Better than a bobblehead: get your replicas of statues of Orioles legends

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I got this in the mail recently. Not the Calvin and Hobbes picture. My son drew that.  No, I mean the Frank Robinson statue.

The Orioles sent it to me (and as you can see, my son took it). And yes, I suppose they did so in order to persuade me to write about their promotion. But their promotion is designed in part to give everyone who takes advantage of it statues like these too. I want you all to have them, so I’m willing to be used.

The promotion: the Orioles Legends Celebration Series, in which the Orioles are unveiling statues of their past greats in the picnic area beyond center field at Camden Yards.  They’re doing this for both the great players and Camden Yards itself, as the ballpark is celebrating its 20th anniversary. How on Earth Camden Yards is already 20 years-old I have no idea, but there you have it.

On unveiling days, they’re giving out replica statues like this one of Frank Robinson.  His was already done in April– I suppose you can find one on eBay if you really wanted some — but there are five more to be done this season:

  • Earl Weaver — June 30;
  • Jim Palmer — July 14
  • Eddie Murray — August 11
  • Cal Ripken Jr. — September 6; and
  • Brooks Robinson — September 29

I haven’t seen what the other ones look like, but I do hope that Weaver’s is of him arguing. Or perhaps holding forth about Don Stanhouse, team speed, Terry Crowley, Alice Sweet and her tomato plants. No, I’m not explaining that one. If you don’t know, go Google it. But make sure no kids or bosses are within a mile of you when you do.

Anyway, good show Orioles. These statues beat the heck out of bobbleheads. Now: when is the Randy Milligan statue being unveiled?

Anthony Alford to miss 4-6 weeks following wrist surgery

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Blue Jays’ outfielder Anthony Alford will miss at least 4-6 weeks after undergoing surgery on his left wrist, the team announced on Saturday. Alford was placed on the 10-day disabled list earlier in the week after sustaining a left hamate fracture on a foul pitch, and could miss significant time in what looks to be a lengthy rehab process. MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm reports that the procedure has been scheduled for next week and will be performed by Dr. Donald Sheridan in Arizona.

Alford, 22, was called up to the majors from Double-A New Hampshire last Friday. He went hitless in his first three outings, finally catching a break against the Brewers on Tuesday when he pinch-hit a leadoff double in the seventh. The injury occurred two innings later when Alford fouled off a pitch in the ninth inning, fracturing his wrist in the process.

Alford will join eight other players on the Blue Jays’ disabled list, including outfielders Steve Pearce (calf strain), Dalton Pompey (concussion) and Darrell Cecillani (partial shoulder dislocation). He’s expected to be replaced by 24-year-old outfield prospect Dwight Smith Jr.

Stephen Strasburg hit a new career high today

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Good luck getting a hit against the Nationals this weekend. Stephen Strasburg followed Max Scherzer‘s 13-strikeout performance on Friday with a dazzling outing of his own on Saturday afternoon. The right-hander whiffed a career-best 15 batters in seven innings, allowing just three hits and a walk in the Nats’ 3-0 win.

It took Strasburg several innings to get into a groove after pitching into (and out of) a jam in the first inning. The Padres loaded the bases with Allen Cordoba‘s leadoff single, a throwing error by Ryan Zimmerman and a four-pitch walk to Cory Spangenberg. By the third, Strasburg was cruising, striking out the side on 18 pitches and keeping the Padres off the basepaths until the sixth. He recorded his 15th and final strikeout in the seventh inning, catching Padres’ prospect Franchy Cordero swinging on a 1-2 pitch to effectively end his outing.

While 15 strikeouts set a new career record for the Nationals’ ace, he came close to reaching the mark twice before. The first time, he struck out 14 of 24 batters during his major league debut against the 2010 Pirates, though the 5-2 win did little more than keep the Nationals neck-and-neck with the Marlins at the bottom of the NL East. Five years later, he tied his 14-strikeout record against the 2015 Phillies, tossing a one-hitter in eight innings to cement his ninth victory of the season.

The only one who doesn’t seem overly enthused by the new record? Strasburg himself, who told MLB.com’s Jamal Collier and AJ Cassavell: “It’s pretty cool, but there’s another game five, six days from now. I’ll enjoy it tonight, but back to work tomorrow.”