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How to watch the Orioles' draft selections still playing in the NCAA tournament

How to watch the Orioles' draft selections still playing in the NCAA tournament

With seven of their picks, the Baltimore Orioles drafted players whose college baseball careers are still alive for at least three more games. With draft selections from Stanford, Oklahoma State, LSU and Ole Miss, fans have the chance to scout the Orioles' picks for themselves in the 2019 NCAA Super Regionals.

The Orioles selected three Stanford players: Kyle Stowers, Maverick Handley and Andrew Daschbach. The trio joins the Cardinal as they face the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the Starkville Super Regional, which starts Saturday at 3 p.m. on ESPN2. 

Stowers, the Baltimore competitive balance round B pick, showed a knack for driving in runs; the center fielder put up a combined 80 RBIs between his 2018 and 2019 seasons. 

Handley, a catcher drafted in the sixth round, has more than just a cool first name. Like Stowers, Handley is strong at the plate, with 13 doubles in the 2019 campaign. 

Daschbach, an 11th-round pick, is nothing but consistent. The powerhouse first baseman went yard for 17 home runs apiece in both 2018 and 2019.

Two more draft picks, the Orioles' 19th and 22nd round picks, take the field with the Oklahoma State Cowboys in the Lubbock Super Regional against Texas Tech, starting Friday at 3 p.m. on ESPN2. 

Both right-handers, Jensen Elliot and Jake Lyons, the pair served different purposes on the mound. Elliot, the 19th rounder, is a dominant starter with 10 wins and 3 complete games this year. The 22nd round pick Lyons works as a reliever, with 50 strikeouts and five wins in just over 47 innings pitched in 2019. 

Baltimore's third-round pick Zach Watson and the LSU Tigers face Florida State starting on Saturday at 3 p.m. in the Baton Rouge Super Regional, which will be aired on ESPN.

Watson, a center fielder at LSU, hit over .300 in each of his three seasons with the Tigers, including his 2016 freshman season in which he led the team with a .317 average in 221 at-bats.  

The Orioles' final draft pick still in the tournament is 29th rounder Houston Roth. A right-hander at Ole Miss, Roth and the Landsharks take on the Arkansas Razorbacks in the Fayetteville Super Regional, starting at noon Saturday on ESPN.

A strikeout reliever, Roth punched out more batters than innings pitched in each of his three seasons on the mound for Ole Miss, including 41 strikeouts in 20.2 innings in 2017. 

After the best-of-three super regionals, the remaining eight teams head to the College World Series to compete for one of the highest honors in college baseball. 

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Orioles announce family-friendly time changes to their regular season schedule

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Orioles announce family-friendly time changes to their regular season schedule

The Orioles announced significant changes to their regular-season schedule Thursday, making it more family-friendly during non-summer months. 

According to Joe Trezza, the Orioles will start at 6:35 p.m. ET for games that occur before Memorial Day and after Labor Day. Home games during the summer will retain their 7:05 p.m. ET start time.

Major League Baseball saw a record 3:05:35 average run time for games in 2019 despite changes made before 2018 to cut mound visits without pitching changes. 

With the average length of a game longer than ever and the fact that the Orioles have finished last in the AL East in three consecutive seasons, this is seemingly a smart move to get more fans out to Camden Yards. 

John Means finished second in AL Rookie of the Year voting after a surprising season, so the Orioles days as the butt of most baseball-related jokes could be nearing an end. 

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Orioles' John Means falls short in AL Rookie of the Year voting

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Orioles' John Means falls short in AL Rookie of the Year voting

It was always going to be an uphill climb. Now? It’s reality.

John Means did not become the first Oriole to win the AL Rookie of the Year award in 20 years.

The surprising ace finished second behind Yordan Alvarez in this year’s voting. The result is less of a surprise, as Alvarez utterly dominated opponents at the plate all year long. From the moment he was promoted in June, Alvarez was one of the best hitters in baseball. 

By wRC+, an all-encompassing offensive metric, he was actually the second-best hitter in baseball behind only Mike Trout. And he owned the best OPS for a rookie in MLB history.

He accomplished all this while hitting in the middle of the most formidable lineup in baseball, a Houston unit that carried them to the American League pennant.

Alvarez didn’t enjoy the most prolific postseason of all-time, but he still pitched in with a few big hits against the Nationals in the World Series. His hot streak in the Fall Classic actually allowed him to lead the Astros in both batting average and OPS against the Nats.

For so many reasons, Alvarez earned his unanimous first-place finish. But don’t let that diminish Means’ year.

A non-prospect who was made the Orioles roster out of Spring Training, Means was the team’s lone All-Star representative this season. He held his own in the vaunted AL East, and was the clear-cut second-best rookie in the AL in 2019.

Means’ great season helped him receive 16 second-place votes, while no other candidate received more than six.

In a long, trying season, Means stood out as one of the most pleasant surprises for the Orioles in recent memory. The organization has long struggled to develop starting pitching, which has constantly placed them behind the 8-ball in their division. If the front office can unearth a few more hidden gems in the coming seasons, the rebuild may just work out after all.

Brandon Lowe of the Rays rounded out the top three finishers, while Eloy Jimenez finished fourth.

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