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Several Baltimore Orioles Nominated for 2014 MLB Greatness in Baseball Yearly Awards

October 31st, 2014 at 9:45 AM
By Josh Michael

One of the few good things about the baseball season coming to an end is the vast amount of awards that get handed out for performances during the season. The Baltimore Orioles had eight members of the organization nominated for nine awards for this year's MLB Greatness in Baseball Yearly (GIBBY) Awards.

Baltimore's nominees this year are Executive VP/GM Dan Duquette (Executive of the Year), Buck Showalter (Manager of the Year), Nelson Cruz (Hitter), Adam Jones (Play), JJ Hardy (Defensive Player), Andrew Miller (Setup Man), Darren O'Day (Setup Man) and Zach Britton who was nominated in two categories (Closer, Breakout Pitcher).

Major League Baseball announced that this year's awards feature nominees in 23 categories. Individual honors will go to the MLB MVP, in addition to the year's best starting pitcher, hitter, closer, setup man, rookie, breakout hitter, breakout pitcher, bounceback player, defensive player, manager, executive and postseason performer.

There are also some categories that deal with specific instances. GIBBY trophies also will be awarded for the year's top play, outfield throw, storyline, hitting performance, pitching performance, oddity, walk-off, Cut4 topic, regular-season moment and postseason moment, with video available via MLB.com's Must C highlight reels.

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Baltimore Orioles Exercise 2015 Options for RHP Darren O’Day and LHP Wei-Yin Chen

October 31st, 2014 at 7:31 AM
By Josh Michael

MLB Free Agency officially began on Thursday, but the Baltimore Orioles quickly made the move to keep two of their potential free agents. Baltimore exercised their 2015 team options on both RHP Darren O'Day and LHP Wei-Yin Chen.

This should not be surprising news to anyone, especially Orioles fans. Both O'Day and Chen had terrific 2014 seasons and their 2015 options are very team friendly, thus, it comes as no surprise that Baltimore exercised their options.

O'Day's 2015 option is worth $4.25 million and Chen's is $4.75 million. Not a bad duo for the Orioles to keep for $9 million next season.

Chen posted his best season with the Orioles in 2014. He recorded a career high 16 wins with a 3.54 ERA, 1.23 WHIP and tossed 185 2/3 innings. When Chen was on the mound, you knew the opponent would have to swing the bat. That was evident by the fact that Chen walked just 35 batters in his 31 starts.

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Examining What Kind of Contract LHP Andrew Miller Could Expect in Free Agency

October 30th, 2014 at 9:28 AM
By Josh Michael

The Baltimore Orioles made a tremendous move at the MLB trade deadline this season when they acquired LHP Andrew Miller from the Boston Red Sox. Miller was fantastic for the Orioles and increased his value even more as he will now enter the free agent market, but what kind of contract could he expect to get?

Miller became another lights out option in the Orioles bullpen after he was acquired to give the Birds a three-headed monster. Along with Zach Britton and Darren O'Day, Miller's presence gave Baltimore one of the best back-ends of the bullpen in all of baseball.

Even if Miller had not been acquired by a contender at the trade deadline, he was still going to be a sought after arm in free agency, but his ability to show that he can handle the stretch run and the postseason only increased his value that much more.

After being acquired by Baltimore, Miller proceeded to post a 2-0 record with a 1.35 ERA, 0.60 WHIP, .119 opponents batting average, and struck out 34 batters against just four walks in 20 innings pitched. Think about this. In his 20 innings pitched, Miller allowed just eight hits, three runs and one home run. He was simply remarkable.

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Let the MLB Free Agency Frenzy Begin; Nine Baltimore Orioles Expected to Hit the Market

October 30th, 2014 at 7:18 AM
By Josh Michael

The San Francisco Giants are once again World Series Champions for the third time in the last five years, but the conclusion of the World Series also marks the beginning of free agency. This morning marks the official beginning of the offseason for all of Major League Baseball and the Baltimore Orioles are likely to see nine players hit the market.

Baltimore has 11 players that could hit the free agent market in Alexi Casilla, Wei-Yin Chen, Nelson Cruz, Nick Hundley, Kelly Johnson, Nick Markakis, Andrew Miller, Darren O’Day, Johan Santana, Joe Saunders and Delmon Young.

Wait didn’t we say the Orioles are likely to see nine players hit the market? Yep, because the Orioles are going to pick up 2015 options for both Chen and O’Day, so that takes the list down to nine. Chen’s 2015 option is for $4.75 million and O’Day’s $4.25 million.

Of course, with no disrespect to the other players on the list of potential free agents, there are three names on the minds of Orioles fans everywhere: Cruz, Miller and Markakis.

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What Area Should the Baltimore Orioles Focus the Most on This Offseason?

October 29th, 2014 at 10:27 AM
By Josh Michael

The Baltimore Orioles are coming off of their third straight winning season and second postseason berth in the last three years. Baltimore will have a lot of decisions to make this offseason, but what area of the team should garner the most focus?

There is a laundry list of potential free agents and arbitration eligible players that the Orioles are facing this offseason, and a lot of difficult decisions will have to be made as a result. Baltimore has a solid core of players returning in 2015 and will have a chance to have four straight winning seasons for the first time since 1982-85 and reach the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1996-97.

Well, are we going to answer the question we posed? Of course! Baltimore's front office should focus more on their outfield than any other area for their 2015 big league club.

Why the outfield? Well for starters, the trio of Nick Markakis, Nelson Cruz, and Delmon Young are all pending free agents and Alejandro De Aza is not a given to be tendered in arbitration. Potentially, the Orioles could have just Adam Jones and David Lough as returning outfielders in 2015, although we do not foresee that being the case.

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