Orioles need an outfielder with a future not a past


Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

When it comes to talking about the Baltimore Orioles this time of year, it seems as though conversations tend to repeat themselves. One of which is the conversation about the Orioles and their need to sign an outfielder this off-season. Each path that seems like an option for Baltimore to use is rapidly closing up.

Whether it be Matt Kemp getting traded to the Padres or Melky Cabrera signing with the White Sox, the Orioles do not have a lot of high-valued outfielders remaining on the market.

The Orioles have shown interest in bringing back Delmon Young to the team in 2015. They have also shown voiced interest in free agents Marlon Byrd, Michael Morse, and, most recently, Colby Rasmus.

In addition to free agents, they have shown some interest in trading for Atlanta’s outfielder Justin Upton. However, general manager Dan Duquette has adamantly expressed that he would not be willing to part with pitchers Kevin Gausman and/or Dylan Bundy and that the Orioles would much rather sign a free agent outfielder than trade for one.

Hearing about these possible free agent signings, one thing concerns me and that is the players’ age.

  • Delmon Young- 29 years old
  • Michael Morse- 32 years old
  • Marlon Byrd- 37 years old
  • Colby Rasmus- 28 years old

If the Orioles are willing to buy a free agent outfielder then they need to make sure that he has more of a future in baseball than he does a past. Byrd, being 37 years old, only has a couple more seasons of playing left in him at best. And although Morse is just 32 years old, the Orioles cannot be offering big money to a player who will not be the team’s franchise-type outfielder.

The team’s best two options in regards to signing youth is in Young and Rasmus.

In 83 games played during the 2014 season, Young batted .302/.337/.442 with 19 extra base hits and 30 RBI.

In 104 games played during the 2014 season, Rasmus batted .225/.287/.448 with 40 extra base hits and 40 RBI.

Young has proven himself as a clutch hitter with the ball club, especially when Baltimore is in the Postseason and need a hit with runners in scoring position.

Young can also be used as the Orioles designated hitter which is another hole the team has to fill before Opening Day next season. And despite his size, Young is a reliable outfielder with a 1.000 fielding percentage in the outfield in 2014.

On the other side Rasmus will give you 16-18 home runs each season with around 50 RBI. Rasmus is a good fielder as well with a .984 fielding percentage as well. The downside is that Rasmus has only played six games in right field during his Major League career so you may have to take into the inexperience factor.

Fans are getting restless quickly this off-season and rightfully so. It is time Dan Duquette makes a move and fast before there are not any moves left to make.