We do Have Options
I’m not going to get into great detail about some of the options the team has, but I’ll name a few. So far this young off-season we’ve heard some trade and free-agency rumors. Some make sense, some are laughable.
Dan Uggla– For about a week we’ve been hearing the O’s are actively trying to work a deal with the Marlins for Dan Uggla. It was reported the Marlins are asking for a second level pitcher. I’m not exactly sure what that will include in our organization. Maybe it would be Hernandez, or maybe it would be somebody like Berken. If this trade was to happen, we’d have to convert Uggla from second to third base. Uggla was one of the worst defensive second baseman last season; and maybe would be suited better for third because of his lack of speed and agility. This would be a very interesting move if we made it, but too many things would have to happen for the deal to get done. First, I’ve heard reports that the O’s would prefer to have somebody who has third base experience, which isn’t Uggla at the Major league level. Secondly, Uggla and his agent made it clear he doesn’t want to move from second base.
Jermaine Dye– A few rumors have been looming around that the Orioles are interested in sighing Dye strictly as a DH type player. Dye, who most likely will never be able to play in the outfield again, and a slowed down bat, would probably sign cheap. Even if Dye would sign a one year deal I’d still say no. He is old, he can’t hit like he used to, an he is limited to the DH spot. We should most definitely be able to find a better player with power than Jermain Dye.
Chone Figgins– Getting Figgins is so unlikely that I’m not going to spend much time on it. He has Scott Boras as his agent; and most likely will be financially out our league. I know the checkbook is supposed to be open this off-season, but it just doesn’t make sense to spend big money on a aging third basemen at this point. He’s not even a power hitter, so I don’t think the O’s are going to target him at all.
Adrian Beltre– Now this is a guy that I wouldn’t mind see wearing an Orioles uniform for a season or two. He’s a great fielder at third base who won the gold glove twice. He also has power in his bat that should give us 25-30 homeruns a year. We need guys that can hit well of lefty pitchers, so Beltre should fit in nicely as he’s almost a career .300 hitter off left handed pitchers. Andrian Beltre would be my top choice to stick at third for a couple seasons until the young guys are ready. He also wouldn’t be a bad guy to learn under.
Billy Wagner– We do need a closer, but I’ll pass on this guy. He’s been injured a lot the past few years, which makes him a major liability. Our starters are known for not going deep into games, so we need guys that won’t break down easily. The guy also bugs me for some reason that I can not explain. I know we’ve heard mumblings of interest coming out the organization about Wagner, but I hope it stays at that. A few contenders are also after him, and likely to offer the 39 year old a multi-year contract. The chances of getting Wagner are slim to none.
Erik Bedard– Bringing back Bedard I believe would be a good move for a small contract. It would also make the trade with Mariners even more laughable if he succeeds once again with us. He’s been injured a lot the past few seasons, but maybe coming back to OPCY is all he needs. I still believe Bedard can still be a very good pitcher an would succeed the most coming back to the O’s than any other team. I would love for the O’s to sign Bedard to a short term contract.
I’ve only listed a few of the Rumors I’ve heard so far, an I’m sure we will have a lot more over the next few months. The O’s have a lot of options this off-season with this deep free agent class. I believe the O’s will make a move on some of the players listed above within the next few weeks. Be interesting to see how it unfolds.