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Reports: Baltimore Orioles in Strong Pursuit of Closer Grant Balfour

December 10th, 2013 at 12:22 PM
By Josh Michael

The Baltimore Orioles have certainly been in the news since the MLB Winter Meetings got under way and today is no different as the Birds are reportedly working hard to sign free agent closer Grant Balfour. 'Dan Duquette, Buck Showalter' photo (c) 2013, Keith Allison - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Baltimore certainly has a need at closer, as they were unwilling to pay Jim Johnson $10-11 million for the 2014 season and traded him to the Oakland A’s as a salary dump, and now it seems they would like the guy that Johnson is replacing in Balfour.

MASN’s Roch Kubatko reports that no official offer has been made, but he expects the offer to come later this afternoon. To view his report, click here.

Balfour has been a pretty reliable closer in recent years, and would likely be looking for a two year deal, which would help the Orioles in that he would cost less per year than Johnson’s $10 million would have in 2014.

A two year deal would make Balfour 37 when the deal is up as he will turn 36 later this month, which isn’t terrible when you are talking about relievers. He has been pretty darn consistent as he has saved 62 games in 67 chances over the past two seasons, while not registering an ERA over 2.60 in each of the last four seasons.

Many people forget that Balfour has pitched in the AL East before with the Tampa Bay Rays and did so effectively, thus that is less of a worry than with other possible candidates.

We will keep you posted on any news coming out of Orlando, and if and when anything becomes official with Balfour.

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Tags: Baltimore, Baltimore Orioles, Baseball, Grant Balfour, Jim Johnson, MLB

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