Former Orioles General Manager Jim Duquette joins Ed & Steve to talk about the Baltimore Orioles off-season and the start of spring training.
The guys ask Jim if he was surprised, now that pitchers and catchers have reported, that this the team the Orioles have; that there were no bigger moves made in the off-season. Jim answered “Yes. I am shocked. Actually I really am. I’m literally very, very surprised that there wasn’t at least one move.” He recognizes the move with Saunders is a good move and one that was necessary, but it’s still not a huge move.
Jim says it’s understandable that the O’s didn’t go after on of those big offensive names because as soon as you start chasing one of them, you normally overpay.
Then a couple of position questions.
Second base is going to be an issue this year with Andino gone to Seattle and Brian Roberts having been so unreliable the past 2 seasons. Jim knows the club is trying to be optimistic with B-Rob and he really likes him as a player and person, but he just doesn’t see how realistically he can still be a starter and play 150 games ever again. He says flat out that it’s not going to happen and that if he even plays 80 games this season it would be a miracle. He can’t think of one player who, at 34-35 years old, with as little starts and at bats as he has had, can bounce back or ever has.
Left field is going to be another topic of controversy. The team made sure to sign Nate McLouth after last season’s post season run. But fans seem to be forgetting about Nolan Reimold. Nolan has been a promising player and possibly a great future player, but he has been very injury-prone. That being said, McLouth isn’t exactly an every day player either. Plus his arm strength from left field has been questioned many times. Jim seems to think that should Reimold stay healthy, it might be best to ease him back into play by splitting time with McLouth. He does see more ‘upside’ with Reimold as the left fielder. For now though, it looks like it will be “Left Field by Committee” until one starter earns the role.
The last topic they cover is the Miami – Biogenesis Clinic that has records of many big name players, such as A-Rod, Melky Cabrera and even Danny Valencia (in the Orioles’ camp) receiving and paying for PEDs. Jim seems to think that names and numbers on a piece of paper is just circumstantial evidence at this point. Unless any more big names come out or people testify to the fact that they actually injected these players, Jim believes the story will just die out and the league won’t even suspend anyone.
Listen to the full interview here: