Winter Meetings Recap: Day Three

Yesterday morning started off with Dan Duquette talking to MLB Network in regards to Dexter Fowler. Duquette stated “I don’t know if {Dexter Fowler} is an option for us this year”. It could come down to Toronto, or St. Louis for Fowler, as the Orioles are not in discussion with Dexter’s agent.

The Blue Jays have offered Fowler a four-year deal, reportedly in the range of $60MM. The Cardinals have reportedly offered a contract within that same vicinity.

Duquette went on to say, “our outfield defense needs to improve”.

Of course, he is talking about an outfield defense that saw nine different players in right field, and left field, and six in center. For the Orioles last season, left fielders totaled a -22 DRS, in center field a -11, and in right field a -19.

Incase you’re unaware of what the negative is for, it means, below average. Position players totaled 22, 11, and 19 runs saved below average, respectively.

Buck Showalter still likes our guys. He told MLB Network Radio, “I feel better about our pitching than everyone else does. We have four guys in our rotation that are pitching for a contract.”

Those pitchers are Yovani Gallardo, Ubaldo Jimenez, Wade Miley, and Chris Tillman. All four will be free agents after this upcoming season.

Discussions have begun with Chris Tillman on a extension, marking the first time the Orioles have approached Tillman regarding staying for the long-haul. Eduardo Encina had this report via the Baltimore Sun. You can read that article right here.

For now, it seems the talks with Trumbo aren’t going anywhere. There hasn’t been anything reported in regards to numbers changing, however, the Orioles did meet with Trumbo’s representatives again today, to try to smooth things out. It also wasn’t made clear or not if the deal was off the table. I’m sure they’ll be more on that today.

The Mariners seem to be engaged with Trumbo at the moment. That makes the Orioles, Rockies, and now Mariners all engaged in discussions with the 2016 AL HR king.

It seems as if Twitter’s worst nightmare is coming true. The Orioles have reportedly called on Chris Carter.

Carter, 29, was DFA’d by the Brewers on December 2, after leading the National League in home runs last season. Much like someone on the Orioles we all know and love, Carter led the league in strikeouts as well. He’s another one of those all or nothing type players, who finished with a 0.9 WAR last season. Carter’s slash line read .222/.321/.499, and he hit 41 HR’s.

Carter has never hit higher than .239 in seven years in the majors, and since becoming a regular in 2013 (with Houston), he hit as low as .199 in 2015. Defensively, Carter has never finished higher than a -0.1 dWAR, in playing LF, RF, and 1B.

If Carter were to be signed, I can’t imagine it would be from anything other than Trumbo not re-signing. The Orioles do NOT, I repeat, do NOT need to pursue Carter if they re-sign Trumbo. In all honesty, they probably should not pursue him even if they don’t re-sign Trumbo.

What do I know though?

I guess you’re waiting for me to talk about Chris Sale. Well, what do I need to say? The Red Sox traded four prospects to the Chicago White Sox in order to land the five-time All Star.

For the Orioles, they now get the pleasure of facing Chris Sale, probably 10 more times throughout the course of a season.

Don’t worry though, Orioles fans, they do seem to hit Sale well. In 11 appearances (five starts) Sale has pitched to a 2-2 record, with a 3.41 ERA against the O’s. His previous two outings though, one in 2016, and one in 2015, had Orioles batters going 9-51 (.176) against him in 13 innings. Prior to that, in 2014, Sale made two appearances against the Orioles, allowing a much better, .339 average (19-56).

That was then, with the Chicago White Sox, who haven’t finished above .500 since the 2012 season, and haven’t finished in the top ten in runs scored since 2014. The Red Sox are a much better team, have won the AL East two out of the past four years, and finished first in nine total offensive categories, including hits, runs scored, doubles, batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage.

The Orioles aren’t going to change their offseason plans though. As per Roch Kubatko in one of his blog posts this afternoon:

Screen Shot 2016-12-06 at 9.38.53 PM.png

Some other notes here, the Orioles are no longer in on Michael Saunders. Physical concerns could be the issue here, but that’s pure speculation.

The Orioles will not sign former Toronto Blue Jays slugger, Jose Bautista. The reason?

screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-9-43-22-pm

But, Bautista have never really been a superb defender, finishing with a sub -0.0 dWAR every year except 2009, so the Orioles should probably avoid the thirty-six year old right handed hitter anyway.

The Orioles are focused on upgrading the catcher position, and the outfield defense. Let’s hope, for all of our sakes, that nothing deviates from that in the days remaining in Oxon Hill.

 

 

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