Baltimore Orioles Front Office Ranked 20th by Sporting News


In their most recent front office rankings, Sporting News was a bit cruel to the Orioles, ranking their front office 20th. They should be ranked higher than that. 

The Baltimore Orioles front office has been getting the job done at an impressive rate since general manager Dan Duquette was hired before the 2012 season. Say what you want about their moves, the O’s are among the best teams in all of baseball since the 2012 season. They have had four consecutive seasons with a .500 record or better with two playoff berths and a division title.

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Despite that, Duquette hasn’t been getting the proper respect that he deserves from Sporting News. On Tuesday, Jesse Spector from Sporting News released an annual tradition: the power ranking of all the MLB front offices. Spector, who has been rightfully skeptical and critical of the Orioles in the past but always proudly admits when he’s wrong, had this to say about Duquette as he ranked the O’s front office as the 20th best in baseball.

"The O’s have a lineup that can tear the cover off the ball, which is great and a credit to Dan Duquette’s stewardship of the baseball operations department. The O’s have a group of starting pitchers who were widely expected to sabotage Baltimore’s playoff hopes, and, well… we’ll just see if the O’s can hit their way past their starting pitching woes all year long to win a second division title in three years. That they’re capable of doing it, though, is not quite the point — it’s that there was an observable problem and the method of addressing it was Gallardo."

Spector makes some extremely valid points. Duquette needed to address the starting rotation and the best that he could do was Yovani Gallardo

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The Orioles rotation is mediocre at best, especially once you look past Chris Tillman and Kevin Gausman. Tyler Wilson has been a bottom of the rotation starter at best. Mike Wright has been terrible. Ubaldo Jimenez has been even more terrible. The decision to let go of Miguel Gonzalez, who has a 4.74 ERA with the White Sox this season, has proven to be a very unwise one by Duquette.

That said, could the same thing not be said of the Kansas City Royals, ranked eighth? Or the Chicago White Sox, ranked 19th and stuck with the albatross contract of James Shields? It could also be said for last year’s Toronto Blue Jays, who outside of David Price and one month of Marcus Stroman, had below average starting pitching.

Duquette has built a strong team based around its bullpen and its lineup. Did he take a few risks in doing so? Absolutely. Has he made some bad moves? Sure, but quite frankly, all general managers make mistakes. Once again, Duquette has the Orioles looking at their third playoff berth in five seasons as their general manager. That has to count for something, right?

Spector gave credit to the White Sox for acquiring Shields, but why doesn’t Duquette get credit for acquiring Mark Trumbo for Steve Clevenger, who was his third-string catcher? The Orioles deserve more credit and so does Duquette.