The Baltimore Orioles could have several brand new faces, both on the field and in the front office at the end of 2018.
The Baltimore Orioles are going to look very different in 2019 due to a large group of core players moving into free agency.
Of course, it is common knowledge that Manny Machado and Zach Britton are entering their final guaranteed seasons as Orioles. But, not much attention has been given to the fact that Buck Showalter will be a “free agent” at the end of the 2018 season, too.
The Orioles have fared well under Showalter’s gruff managing style. So, the front office should take great care to extend the venerable manager’s contract as soon as possible.
In fact, Showalter has said that he would like to remain the Orioles manager. During the Winter Meetings, he was asked about his desire to stay with the Orioles. He replied:
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"“As I get older, I realize how lucky I am. I think everybody knows what I think of the city and the organization and the people that I’ve come to know. But as every day passes, it’s another great honor.”"
Despite the fact that the Orioles did not do well in 2017, the fault was not on Showalter. There is only so much that a manager can do with the starting rotation that he was given. He did manage the bullpen with the expertise that has given him the stature of one of the best in the game.
In his eight years with the Orioles, he has a record of 622 and 569. While he has yet to win a World Series with any team, he has kept the Orioles competitive, especially in an incredibly tough AL East. Consider, too, that he works for an owner who is reluctant to buy top players and who is reluctant to go for a full rebuild. So, Showalter has done well with what he has been given.
Despite the trend to select managers with little-to-no experience, the Orioles should continue their relationship with Showalter. He brings a toughness to the game that other managers cannot replicate. He’s been an asset in Birdland and should be extended.