It should seem pretty clear to everyone involved that the O’s are going to make at least one more “major move” prior to spring training. To cite a Hall and Oats song, some might look at the moves they’ve already made and say that the Orioles are Running from Paradise given the underwhelming nature of the moves they’ve made thus far. However that aside, one would assume that a trade involving the O’s would involve pitching in some manner. Or would it?
Speaking for myself, I think that a lot of that is contingent upon whether or not the Orioles are able to sign free agent Edwin Jackson. If Jackson comes to the O’s, the rotation suddenly gets a lot more competitive in that you would have x-number of players now competing for three slots in the rotation. And incidentally (perhaps this is unclear and for that I appologize), when I ask what’s involved in a trade I also mean who the Orioles would be getting in return. What needs to be given up is quite another story. Of course if you’re the St. Louis Cardinals you’re going to ask for the sun, moon, and stars, in return for a starter and/or reliever. Luckily Dan Duquette wasn’t about to allow that to happen.
To expound on that point as well as on a previous column, I do have to think that teams know the O’s are trying to improve themselves and they’re not about to allow that to happen without charging a bit extra. However one thing that Duquette has proven is that he’s not going to make a deal just for the sake of making a deal, and allowing other teams to have their pick of the Orioles’ litter.
Nevertheless, I wouldn’t necessarily be surprised to see a trade scenario where the O’s end up with a position player perhaps in exchange for a pitcher or two. One has to wonder if Dan Duquette didn’t amass all of these pitchers so as to have some potential low level trade chips to deal when the time was right. In effect he would be granting himself trade bait without actually having to trade away anyone of value from last year’s team. MASN’s Roch Kubatko reported that the O’s might have had some interest in free agent first baseman Casey Kotchman. That tells me that while they probably don’t mind starting the season with Chris Davis at first base, they wouldn’t mind an upgrade either. So could a trade happen involving a first baseman?
All of this is speculation. My personal opinion is that they will make a trade, and I think it’ll happen this week. Lord knows I’ve been wrong before, however we’ll just have to wait and see.
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