Baltimore Orioles’ pitchers and catchers are due to report to Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota by today. Many of them are already there, as are a few position players. The first workouts begin in earnest tomorrow, and full team workouts begin on February 22nd.
Pitching seems to be a motif for the Orioles dating back to time immemorial. However I suspect we’ll see some open competitions in camp this year for starting roles. That makes the importance of the spring games all the more accentuated.
On that note, the spring schedule has been tweaked slightly. The Orioles will now begin Grapefruit League play on Sunday, February 28th at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates. They’ll also finish up a day later, as they’ll play the Tampa Rays to close the spring slate of games on March 29th. Opening Day is April 1st at Fenway Park in Boston.
MLB also announced last week that the re-tooling of the schedule will pit the teams who train on the west coast of Florida against one another. The same will be true of the east coast of Florida teams. So the Orioles will only exclusively play, Toronto, Boston, New York (Yankees), Tampa, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Atlanta, Detroit, and Philadelphia. This is being done specifically to cut down on travel due to COVID. Television and radio coverage of the new schedule has not yet been announced.