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Baltimore Orioles Creating Holes, not Filling Them Thus Far This Offseason

December 4th, 2013 at 9:27 AM
By Josh Michael

The key for every team in every offseason is to fill the holes your current roster has with better players than those that are already there, but thus far the Baltimore Orioles have failed to fill any holes while creating more.

'Dan Duquette' photo (c) 2013, Keith Allison - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Executive VP/GM Dan Duquette has said that the money saved by trading Jim Johnson will be reallocated elsewhere on the team, and the Orioles have now made the projected $10 million that Johnson would have made the most watched $10 million in recent memory for Orioles' fans.

We have defended the trade based on one notion; if Duquette turns the $10 million into a player or two that fills holes this team has in left field, starting rotation, second base or with a left handed DH, then it could turn out to be a great move, but if the Orioles do nothing of note with the savings, they risk enraging a fan base that is already upset to say the least.

Do not get us wrong, it's just the first week of December and there is plenty of time remaining in the offseason, but when you see several teams around the league improving their team's, while the Orioles have actually made their team worse so far, it is frustrating.

Orioles players apparently feel the same way as ESPN's Buster Olney reported yesterday on Twitter that several Orioles players are unhappy with recent events and hope that things improve over the next few weeks.

Some may argue that the Orioles have made some moves, but have any of them really made the big league club any better?

Baltimore acquired C Johnny Monell from the Giants, but does he make this team better? Maybe, but Steve Clevenger has at least shown he can hit a little bit with Baltimore in 2013, and they will be battling for a backup catcher's role.

What about pitchers Kelvin De La Cruz, Edgmer Escalona and Brad Brach? Well barring an injury, only one or maybe two will be in the Orioles bullpen on Opening Day and would likely serve as middle relief guys or wash-up duty roles and do they honestly make the team better? Baltimore has quality guys in Josh Stinson and Steve Johnson that could fill those roles if need be.

Hey don't forget about Cord Phelps and Jemile Weeks. Oh yeah, sounds a lot like Ryan Flaherty, Alexi Casilla, and Yamaico Navarro from 2013. Weeks has some upside and could turn out to be an OK player at the big league level, but right now would you take him over Flaherty at second?

Bottom line is that Baltimore has not filled any holes that this team had when the season ended, and now they have an additional hole at closer with the trade of Johnson. The winter meetings are next week and a lot can happen between now and February when Spring Training starts, but thus far the Orioles have done nothing to encourage a return to the postseason in 2014.

Oh by the way, the Red Sox, Rays and Yankees continue to improve their ball clubs so the AL East is not going to be an easy task in 2014.


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Tags: Baltimore, Baltimore Orioles, Baseball, Cord Phelps, Dan Duquette, Jemile Weeks, Jim Johnson, MLB, Ryan Flaherty, Steve Johnson

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