Baltimore Orioles News
9-28-15: The Orioles could not have had much worse of a weekend in Boston. Not only did they get swept by the Boston Red Sox, but the Orioles also could not muster a run at Fenway Park in the three-game series. On the bright side, Ubaldo Jimenez threw seven innings of two-run ball on Sunday. Baltimore looks to stop its losing streak against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday.
9-25-15: The Baltimore Orioles have on the field issues to deal with and that has spilled over into the front office as well. The Orioles owner Peter Angelos did not allow his GM Dan Duquette to speak to the Toronto Blue Jays when their AL East rivals asked for permission to speak to him with hopes of filling their president of baseball operations job, a job that would have been a promotion that came with a pay raise for Duquette. It’s very uncommon for a team to block one of their front office members from bettering themselves and furthering their careers which has made many inside and outside the organization, including manager Buck Showalter, to look at Angelos in a new light. Showalter is signed through the 2018 season but was already openly upset with the team’s inability to sign Wei-Yin Chen, Chris Davis, Darren O’Day or Matt Wieters beyond the 2015 season allowing the impressive group to see free agency and test the market. Baltimore has been scouting the Philadelphia Phillies lately leaving many to wonder if the team’s contingency plan for losing Davis specifically is the Phillies first baseman and DH Ryan Howard.
9-21-15: The Orioles were on their way to yet another series victory, but their bullpen could not shut down the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. In the bottom of the ninth inning, Zach Britton blew his fourth save of the season. He allowed a solo home run to Brandon Guyer and a walk-off single to Kevin Kiermaier.
9-18-15: The Baltimore Orioles have been very impressed with what they have seen from outfielder Gerardo Parra since acquiring him before the July 31st trading deadline. The Orioles have been so impressed with Parra in the half of a season he’s been wearing a Baltimore uniform that the team may push towards signing him before the 2016 season as well as a free agent. Parra came over from the Milwaukee Brewers before the trade deadline and while he has only slashed .227/.256/.380 but he has also bashed five home runs and knocked in 13 RBI while scoring 23 runs in just 159 plate appearances. Parra may be the only impending free agent that Baltimore signs this offseason as the likes of Chris Davis, Matt Wieters, Wei-Yin Chen, Darren O’Day, Steve Pearce and others may be too expensive for the Orioles budget for 2016. O’Day is older than your typical free agent at 32-years old, he will be 33-years old by the time the 2016 season is in full swing, but is still in line for a significant payday after setting up for the Baltimore Orioles and Buck Showalter over the past few seasons. O’Day has been dominant as the Orioles setup man and he may be a tough player to replace from within.
9-14-15: The Orioles launched four home runs off Johnny Cueto on Sunday, as the Orioles won the rubber game of their weekend series against the Kansas City Royals. Adam Jones homered in the first inning, and Jonathan Schoop slugged two homers. Chris Davis also hit his 42nd home run of the season in the win.
9-11-15: The Baltimore Orioles lost Nick Markakis before the 2015 season and by the time the calendar changed to August the team had acquired a player that fit the mold of Markakis in Gerardo Parra. The similarities begin on the playing field and end with the fact that the team may end up losing him by the beginning of the 2016 season. Parra is set to be a free agent after the season and may command a four-year deal with a new club, that club is unlikely to be the Baltimore Orioles though. While the team prepares for their final stand in the second American League Wild Card the team will rely heavily on Parra, center fielder Adam Jones and first baseman Chris Davis. The team also brought up some reinforcements to help the core which included outfielder Nolan Reimold and first baseman Andy Wilkins. Wilkins was claimed off waivers by the club which led the team to designating left-handed relief pitcher Cesar Cabral for assignment to accommodate the roster move. Moves like these along with the team’s unwillingness to allow Dan Duquette to pursue the Toronto Blue Jays front office job have reportedly created a rift between the front office and manager Buck Showalter.
9-7-15: On Friday, Chris Davis became the first Major League Baseball player to 40 home runs in 2015, as the Orioles defeated the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre, 10-2, that night. However, Baltimore dropped each of the next two contests to lose the series and fall to 65-71 on the season.
9-4-15: The Baltimore Orioles are looking less and less likely to re-sign first baseman Chris Davis as his contract expectations seem to be rising with every passing game. Many are expecting Davis to command at least a $100,000,000 contract this offseason for somewhere around five seasons. Speaking of potential Major League transactions the Orioles and the Washington Nationals had a deal in place for current Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta back in 2013 before the Baltimore Orioles front office nixed the deal. Washington and Baltimore have had their disputes publicly over the MASN television network and because of that the Orioles refused to make a trade with the Nationals and never have in their franchise’s histories. Instead the Orioles sent Arrieta to the Chicago Cubs where he has flourished into an ace starting pitcher and where he began this week throwing a no hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Baltimore’s recent losing streak has left the seemingly out of both of the American League East Division races and the American League Wild Card chases. At one point in the week the Orioles lost 11 games out of their last 12 games presumably burying the team in the standings while allowing teams like the Tampa Bay Rays to jump them on the depth chart.
8-31-15: On Sunday, the Orioles suffered their fourth straight loss and their 10th in their last 11 games, as they fell, 6-0, to Derek Holland and the Texas Rangers. Baltimore scratched across just three hits in the loss. Adam Jones collected his 23rd double of the season. Miguel Gonzalez threw 5.1 innings and allowed four runs. He fell to 9-11 in 2015 with Sunday’s loss.
8-28-15: The Baltimore Orioles ended this week off by placing one member of their bullpen on revocable waivers in Darren O’Day. If O’Day clears revocable waivers the Orioles can trade him to any team for the remainder of the 2015 season while if he is claimed a whole slew of options open up for the Orioles. Baltimore could bring O’Day back off waivers, they could dump the contract of O’Day on the claiming team or they could work out a trade with the team. The O’Day DFA may be a signal of how the team feels about their playoff chances after going 2-8 in their last ten games. Baltimore was leading the second Wild Card in the American League at the beginning of the week but has fallen behind the Minnesota Twins and the Texas Rangers during their slump. Baltimore has also fallen out of contention in the American League East after dropping eight games behind the Toronto Blue Jays and seven games behind the New York Yankees.
8-24-15: Although the Orioles headed into their four-game series against the visiting Minnesota Twins with a very strong home record, Minnesota swept Baltimore. With Sunday’s 4-3 loss, the Orioles fell to 62-61 on the season. Kevin Gausman threw his third consecutive quality start, but Baltimore has lost each of those contests.
8-21-15: The Baltimore Orioles are making a run at one of the Wild Card playoff spots in the American League in 2015 while still keeping their eyes on the prize in the American League East Division but the team can’t help but look ahead to the 2016 season as well. Baltimore has a slew of free agents to be on this current team including first baseman Chris Davis and catcher Matt Wieters and the team will look to re-sign as many as they can this winter. Whether Baltimore is ready to re-sign any of David, Wieters, Wei-Yin Chen, Gerardo Parra, Darren O’Day, Steve Pearce or Nolan Reimold remains to be seen but one thing is for certain, there will not be enough room and money to sign them all. The team will likely to make both Davis and Parra their priorities as Davis adds an extreme amount of power to the club while Parra adds the speedy defensive outfielder with a good on-base percentage that the team lost when they let Nick Markakis go to the Atlanta Braves via free agency.
8-18-15: With the Orioles completing their four-game sweep of the Athletics on Monday, Baltimore moved to 6-1 against Oakland this season. All of the games between the two teams in 2015 came in August, and in four of the contests, the Orioles posted at least seven runs. After defeating the Athletics, 18-2, on Sunday, Baltimore won on the next day by the score, 4-2, behind catcher Steve Clevenger’s three-run home run.
8-14-15: The Baltimore Orioles had many teams interested in the services of starting pitcher Kevin Gausman before the trading deadline but the team decided to hold onto him rather than trade him away. That doesn’t mean they won’t revisit some of the trade offers now that the August 31st trade deadline is looming. There were a numbers of teams to ask for Gausman in trades including the Colorado Rockies offer of Carlos Gonzalez, the Detroit Tigers for Yoenis Cespedes, the San Diego Padres for Justin Upton and the Los Angeles Dodgers for Carl Crawford. While the team held onto Gausman when the trade deadline came and passed another Orioles hurler, Bud Norris, was not so lucky. Norris was designated for assignment by the team on July 31st and eventually cleared waivers. Baltimore was hoping to stash Norris back in their Triple-A farm system for depth later on in the season but that plan did not come to fruition as the San Diego Padres and uber-aggressive GM AJ Preller pounced on him. Baltimore will be on the hook for the remainder of his $8 million in salary while San Diego will have to pay him a pro-rated version of the major league minimum salary for the remainder of the season.
7-31-15: The Baltimore Orioles came into this final week before the July 31st trading deadline as big time buyers in the market. The Orioles began their week by discussing a deal with the San Diego Padres involving outfielder Justin Upton. Baltimore is also said to be interested in some of the Padres pitchers including namely Tyson Ross and Andrew Cashner, although neither of those players were specifically mentioned in a mega-deal with Upton. Upton would join an impressive list of soon to be free agents for Baltimore joining Matt Wieters, Wei-Yin Chen, Chris Davis and Tommy Hunter. Speaking of Tommy Hunter he was a casualty of the July 31st trading deadline this week as he was traded to the Chicago Cubs in exchange for outfielder Junior Lake. Hunter was sent to Chicago after posting a 3.63 ERA this season with a 6.4 K/9 ratio in 60.2 innings pitched this season while Lake was traded boasting a .241/.283/.380 career slash in the major leagues. Baltimore nearly acquired Phillies outfielder Ben Revere before he went to Toronto but had to settle for Lake as the team looked to improve their outfield and their overall offensive output as a team.
7-27-15: Although catcher Caleb Joseph only had one hit on Sunday at Tropicana Field, he made it count. He slugged his seventh home run of the season, as the Orioles took the rubber match of their three-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays, 5-2. In addition, Nolan Reimold drove in two runs and went 3-for-3 in the victory. With Sunday’s win, Baltimore has put together two wins after a four-game losing streak.
7-24-15: The Baltimore Orioles and their fans heard three words from their General Manager Dan Duquette that all the players and fans wanted to hear, “Orioles are buyers.” The Baltimore Orioles will be buyers at this year’s trading deadline despite falling farther and farther behind the New York Yankees in the American League East Division. The Orioles GM said that despite what happens over the next week the team would be buyers at the trading deadline since the AL East Division is so closely contested. The Orioles have a great offense that can outscore many of the teams in the division but the pitching has been the issue for Baltimore all season long. The team may look to improve on their outfield production while adding a starting pitcher as well if possible. The buying may force the hand of the team to make Kevin Gausman available in trades for the right offensive piece. The team may also ship out Bud Norris before he hits free agency in 2016 in an attempt to improve the team and make a run at the playoffs in 2015. Norris has struggled this season with an ERA approaching 7.00 but has shown to be healthy with a velocity touching 94 MPH consistently leaving many to hope that a change of scenery or a trade to the National League could be beneficial.
7-21-15: The Orioles, who had won just three games in July before heading to Detroit, took two of three games from the Tigers. Adam Jones and Jonathan Schoop each had multiple hits in all three games of the series. Both also homered on Sunday, as the Orioles defeated the Tigers, 9-3, and moved to 46-45 on the season.
7-17-15: The Baltimore Orioles are in the midst of a fight for the American League East Division and the July 31st trading deadline may make or break every single team in the division. This is terrible news for Baltimore who may be in for an extremely quiet July 31st due to the fact that some of their top prospects are injured. Two of the team’s top pitching prospects Dylan Bundy and Hunter Harvey are currently on the shelf making any major deal for the club tough to pull off. Another potential prospect that the team won’t have at their disposal is 68th overall draft pick Jonathan Hughes who did not sign a deal before the July 17th 5:00 pm deadline. Hughes was the Orioles second round pick in the 2015 MLB First Year Players Draft but instead of pursuing his professional career he will continue his amateur career at Georgia Tech University. Hughes is a Georgia-born right handed starting pitcher that turned down a $907K slot recommendation to head to college. For not signing Hughes the Orioles will receive the 69th overall pick in the 2016 MLB First Year Players Draft as compensation much like the Houston Astros received the #2 overall pick in the draft in 2015 after failing to sign top draft pick overall Brady Aiken from the 2014 MLB draft.
7-13-15: The Orioles started the scoring in Sunday’s contest at Camden Yards with a solo home run by Adam Jones with two outs in the first inning. However, Baltimore would not score again until the bottom of the ninth. The Washington Nationals were leading, 3-1, until Jones launched another solo home run with two outs, but Chris Davis struck out, as Baltimore lost and fell to 44-44 on the season.
7-3-15: The Baltimore Orioles began the week pondering over a tough roster decision that no team really wants to have to make. The team called up right handed starting pitcher Tyler Wilson early in the week forcing the team to decide which outfielder would have to leave the team to make room. Players originally thought to be on the chopping block were Delmon Young, Steve Pearce, David Lough and Nolan Reimold while Adam Jones remains the only lock in the Orioles outfield. The Orioles did not simply want to designate one of their outfielders and instead worked on trades for much of the week with National League teams, mainly on Young, before making their ultimate decision. The team initially designated Young for assignment giving the club ten days to release or trade the outfielder. By week’s end the team had hoped to have a deal for Young with a team but did not leaving many to wonder if Young would simply be released. With or without Young the Orioles have come roaring back from as low as 4th place in the American League East Division all the way to a first place tie with the New York Yankees in the division. With the July 31st trading deadline looming the team may make a few moves to put the club over the top and secure another division crown.
6-30-15: After sweeping the visiting Cleveland Indians over the weekend, the first-place Orioles hosted the Texas Rangers on Monday. Baltimore put nine hits on the board, but could only score one run, as the team lost to Texas, 8-1. On the bright side, Adam Jones, who seems to have recovered from his shoulder injury, drove in the team’s only run of the game.
6-16-15: Wei-Yin Chen threw eight shutout innings with nine strikeouts, and the Orioles won their third consecutive game in which Chen has started. Although there were just nine hits combined in Monday’s 4-0 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies, one of the hits was a three-run home run by Matt Wieters in the sixth inning.
6-8-15: After playing just 26 games in 2014 due to Tommy John surgery, Matt Wieters was activated from the disabled list on Friday. Impressively, he is already looking strong in his first three games of this season: he is 5-for-12 with a double, triple and home run. The three-bagger and round-tripper came on Sunday, as the Orioles took the three-game series from the Indians in Cleveland.
6-5-15: The Baltimore Orioles designated Alejandro De Aza for assignment late last week and this week the team was able to work out a trade for the veteran outfielder with the Boston Red Sox. The Orioles sent De Aza and cash considerations to Boston for Double-A RHP Joe Gunkel. De Aza was added to the Orioles at the 2014 trading deadline and signed a new deal for the 2015 season with the club worth $5 million, which about $3.9 million of that contract remaining on his deal. De Aza was slashing a meager .214/.277/.359 triple slash this season giving the Orioles plenty of reasons for unloading him and his contract for the remainder of the season. Baltimore will be responsible for around $2.9 million of his contract for the remainder of the season after the Red Sox agreed to pay right at $1 million for his services for the remainder of 2015. Ryan Lavarnway is also leaving the Orioles team after being designated for assignment by the team last week. Lavarnway has elected free agency rather than accept a minor league assignment with the team and will look for another minor league deal elsewhere with a better chance to reach the major leagues.
6-1-15: Adam Jones returned to the lineup on Monday, as the Orioles played their 50th game of the season. It was the first contest of a four-game series in Houston, as a part of a seven-game road trip. Unfortunately, Jones went 0-for-3 and scored only one of the team’s two runs, and Baltimore dropped its third straight game.
5-30-15: The Baltimore Orioles are evaluating talent in the catcher position right now as the team prepares for the return of their starter Matt Wieters. This week the team designated 27 year old backstop Ryan Lavarnway for assignment and announced that fellow catcher Steve Clevenger will get another look with the big league club. Clevenger has been tearing up Triple-A this season and gives the team a left handed compliment to current right handed starter Caleb Joseph and potentially gives the team a power bat off the bench for late game situations. Clevenger posted a .352/.413/.451 triple slash with 11 walks and 10 K’s in Triple-A this season and hopes to bring that big bat with him into Camden Yards and Oriole Park for the remainder of the season. It was thought that either of these two catchers would be catching top pitching prospect Dylan Bundy sooner rather than later this season but the big RHP has been scratched from his last start with a bout of shoulder stiffness. Bundy has already undergone Tommy John surgery in his career but thankfully it does not look like he will need a second as the team is simply calling it shoulder tendinitis for now. This news came after the team already lost relief pitcher Brian Matusz for eight games after being ejected in an extra innings game for having a foreign substance on his arm during a contest. Matusz will not appeal the decision and starting serving his suspension immediately in hopes of getting back to the club sooner rather than later.
5-25-15: The Orioles had an interesting end of the week, as they signed Cuban left-hander Ariel
Miranda to a minor league deal and Baltimore reliever Brian Matusz was ejected for a
foreign substance on his arm on Saturday. In that game and on Sunday, the Orioles’ offense struggled, as they lost the series to the Miami Marlins.
5-11-15: J.J. Hardy added to the Orioles’ high home run total at Yankee Stadium, but the Orioles
could only muster one more run against the New York Yankees on Sunday, as they fell,
6-2. With the loss, Baltimore fell for the fifth time in its last six games. However, the
Orioles hope to bounce back at home against the Toronto Blue Jays.
5-4-15: The Orioles had a hectic week, as their games last Monday and Tuesday against the Chicago White Sox were postponed due to protests in Baltimore. They then defeated the White Sox, 8-2, in the only game played of the series. Major League Baseball shifted the Orioles’ weekend series with the Tampa Bay Rays from Maryland to Florida, and Baltimore won two of the three contests.
4-28-15: On Friday, the Orioles lost their second baseman for the second straight week. They placed Ryan Flaherty on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to Thursday, due to a right groin strain. However, Baltimore bounced back from a five-game losing streak to take its weekend series with the Boston Red Sox. Unfortunately, riots forced a postponement of Monday’s home game with the Chicago White Sox.
4-21-15: Last Saturday, the Orioles placed second baseman Jonathan Schoop on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained MCL and a partial tear of the PCL in his right knee. The Orioles activated infielder Jimmy Paredes to replace Schoop on the roster and in the lineup. After victories on Saturday and Sunday in Boston, the Orioles committed three errors in their rain-shortened 7-1 loss to the Red Sox on Monday.
4-14-15: On Saturday, Jonathan Schoop hit his first career grand slam as a part of an evening that included three Orioles home runs. Ubaldo Jimenez threw seven shutout innings with eight strikeouts in the win. Unfortunately, that 7-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays is Baltimore’s only win over the last five games, including Monday’s 6-5 loss to the New York Yankees.
4-7-15: Before Monday’s Opening Day game, the Orioles selected the contract of catcher Ryan Lavarnway and designated pitcher Ryan Webb for assignment. Later that day, Baltimore hit three home runs, one each by Alejandro De Aza, Steve Pearce and Ryan Flaherty, as the Orioles defeated the Tampa Bay Rays, 6-2. Chris Tillman started and threw 6.2 innings of one-run ball.
3-31-15: Last Wednesday, the Orioles acquired first baseman Michael McDade from the Texas Rangers in exchange for future considerations. On Friday, Nolan Reimold continued his strong 2015 spring training with a home run and a double in his two at-bats of the Orioles’ rain-shortened game. Baltimore was leading, 4-3, before the game was called.
3-24-15: The San Antonio Spurs have their eyes on a playoff spot after another strong week last week. With that strong week and a strong second half the Spurs are racing towards the playoffs with a 40-24 record. The Spurs started this week by staying at home in San Antonio to play host to Andrew Wiggins and the Minnesota Timberwolves. During the contest San Antonio had maybe their best game of the season offensively as the team scored no less than 29 points in a quarter in a 123-97 victory over Minnesota. The Spurs scoring leader was Kawhi Leonard who had 15 points in the game with the help of eight assists from Tony Parker in the victory. Meanwhile the Timberwolves scoring attack was led by Kevin Martin who had 19 points but it was not enough in the loss for Minnesota. For the Spurs next contest the team made the trip out to historic Madison Square Garden to face off with the New York Knicks. During the game the Knicks and Spurs could not decide a winner in regulation and needed an extra five minute overtime period. The Knicks looked well on their way to yet another loss after posting just 42 points in the first half but the team woke up on both sides of the court in the second half. New York made up a 10 point deficit in the second half, seven those points being made up in the fourth quarter, just to force the overtime. In the extra period the Knicks rode that second half momentum and hot shooting hand led by Alexey Shved to take down the defending NBA champion Spurs by the final score of 104-100. For the Spurs next contest the team made the trip out to Milwaukee to face off against Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks. During the game the Spurs used an explosive 36 point second quarter to propel the team to an eventual 114-103 victory over Milwaukee. The leading scorer in the contest was Green who had 20 points and eight rebounds for the Spurs while Tim Duncan dished out seven assists in the victory. Meanwhile the scoring attack for the Bucks was led by 19 points from Giannis Antetokounmpo and 11 rebounds from Miles Plumlee but it was not enough in the loss for Milwaukee. When the week was all said and done the team finished with an overall record of 42-25. Get your tickets for next week as the team stays home to play host to the Boston Celtics before playing a pair of road games against the Atlanta Hawks and the Dallas Mavericks. The team will then return home once again to San Antonio to finish their week when the team plays host to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
3-18-15: On Monday, the Orioles reassigned right-handed pitcher Hunter Harvey to minor league
camp and released left-hander Mark Hendrickson, who has not made an appearance in a
major league game since 2011. They also optioned infielders Christian Walker and Rey
Navarro to Triple-A Norfolk and right-handed pitcher Dylan Bundy to Double-A Bowie.
3-3-15: On Wednesday, the Orioles signed shortstop Everth Cabrera to a one-year, $2.4 million contract. Last week, the 28-year-old Nicaraguan also took a plea agreement for a misdemeanor charge for resisting arrest that occurred last September. Then, on Friday, manager Buck Showalter said that Chris Davis will get some spring training playing time in right field in hopes to have him ready if the team needs him there during the regular season.
2-24-15: Last week, the Orioles signed journeyman infielder Jayson Nix to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Also last week, manager Buck Showalter said that Matt Wieters, who is working back from Tommy John surgery, will not be limited in spring training. Then on Saturday, outfielder Alejandro De Aza lost his arbitration case and was awarded $5 million.
2-17-15: The Orioles, the only Major League Baseball team to play in Cuba since Fidel Castro
took power in 1959, are interested in returning since relations between the United States
and Cuba have improved. Recently, Baltimore re-signed outfielder Julio Borbon to a minor league contract. The soon-to-be 29-year-old last played in the majors in 2013 when he appeared in 72 games for the Chicago Cubs.
2-9-15: On Tuesday, the Orioles sent infielder Steve Lombardozzi to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for cash considerations. Last week, Baltimore also avoided arbitration with righty Miguel Gonzalez and lefty Zach Britton. Each signed a one-year deal: Gonzalez’s was for $3.275 million and Britton’s was for $3.2 million with $300,000 in performance bonuses.
2-5-15: The Baltimore Orioles won the AL East with ease in 2014, but had a disappointing finish to their season by getting swept by the Kansas City Royals. The Orioles have surprisingly had a quiet offseason, opting not to bring back Nelson Cruz or Nick Markakis and haven’t courted any big free agent superstars. Instead, they have chosen not to overspend by acquiring role players to fill the gap and are content to what got this ballclub into the ALCS in 2014. Orioles tickets for 2015 have an asking average price of over $100, but still affordable currently at an average price of $102.30 on the secondary market, as ticket for the home opener on April 10 at Camden Yards against the Blue Jays are averaging $321.47.
10-20-14: The Baltimore Orioles won the American League East division this season and had the second best record in the American League heading into the postseason. The Orioles sat at home watching the Kansas City Royals defeat the Oakland Athletics in the Wild Card Playoff Game and then watched that same Royals team sweep the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for their first trip to the American League Championship Series since 1985. Meanwhile Baltimore took care of business with the Detroit Tigers while sweeping away the pitching heavy Tigers setting up the ALCS with the Royals. Kansas City, this season’s Cinderella team, took the first two games of the ALCS placing Baltimore’s back against the wall heading into this week.
In Game Three of the ALCS Kansas City sent Jeremy Guthrie to the mound to face off with the Orioles lefty Wei-Yin Chen in Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City. This game did not feature the big dominant starting pitchers or the sexy names that draw fans to the ballpark but this was one of the best pitched games in the entire ALCS. Steve Pearce got things going for the Orioles in the Top of the 2nd inning with a double and JJ Hardy got a double of his own off Guthrie to give the Orioles an early 1-0 lead. This would be the only run that Guthrie would allow in the contest as he went 5.0 IP and allowed just three hits and the one run before turning things over to the Kansas City bullpen. Chen was rolling into the 4th inning before the Royals Billy Butler hit a sacrifice fly to tie the game at 1-1. Two innings later Alex Gordon had an RBI groundout to give the Royals a 2-1 lead for their bullpen and gave Chen an end to his night. Chen finished with 5.1 IP and allowed seven hits and two runs before handing the ball to Kevin Gausman. The three headed monster in the Royals bullpen of Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis, and Greg Holland shut down the Orioles for the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings as Holland notched his third save of the series and the Royals took a commanding 3-0 lead in the best of seven series. Kansas City finds themselves just one win away from their first World Series berth since 1985.
In Game Four of the ALCS Baltimore sent Miguel Gonzalez, not Chris Tillman the team’s ace, to the mound to face off with the Royals Jason Vargas in a controversial decision made by O’s manager Buck Showalter. Gonzalez made Showalter look like a genius on the day as he lasted 5.2 innings allowing two runs, just one of them earned, while striking out four. Vargas was even better for Ned Yost and the Royals as he lasted 5.1 innings and only allowed one run, a solo home run, while striking out six Baltimore Orioles. Kansas City jumped out for both runs off Gonzalez in the bottom of the first inning as Eric Hosmer singled in a run while another was unearned giving the Royals a quick 2-0 lead in the game. Ryan Flaherty and the Orioles inched back in the Top of the 3rd with a solo shot off Vargas accounting for the only mistake Vargas made on the day. In the 6th inning the Royals went to the bullpen once again with their three headed monster in Herrera for 1.2 innings, Davis for 1.0 inning and Holland for the 9th inning. In the Top of the 9th Baltimore sent up the heart of their order in Nelson Cruz, Delmon Young, and JJ Hardy to face the Royals closer. Cruz started the inning by drawing a walk and being pinch run for by Alejandro De Aza. Young would immediately bounce into a rally killing double play to put the Royals just one out away from the World Series with all that was standing in their way was Hardy, the highest paid shortstop in all of Major League Baseball. Holland made quick work of Hardy and the Baltimore Orioles as the Royals swept the AL East champions 4-0 in the series. Holland saved all four games in the series as the Orioles had no answer for him, Herrera, or Davis. Outfielder Lorenzo Cain was named the 2014 ALCS MVP for the AL champion Kansas City Royals.
Baltimore now heads into the offseason with their window of winning with this team as it is currently constructed quickly closing. Nelson Cruz is a free agent to be and will be offered a qualifying offer while the team has already announced that the team option on right fielder Nick Markakis will not be picked up for the 2015 season. The core is there for Baltimore next season but there will be enough change to certainly disrupt things next year for Baltimore. It’s back to the drawing board for Buck Showalter and company in Baltimore as the team prepares for another long offseason.
10-14-14: The Baltimore Orioles are fresh off a three game sweep of the American League Central division champion Detroit Tigers and headed into the ALCS to face the Kansas City Royals. Baltimore won their three games against the Tigers in three totally different ways. In Game One the Orioles simply out-slugged the Tigers offense and Max Scherzer en route to a 12-3 victory. In the second game the timely hitting was on full display as Baltimore was trailing late in the game before Delmon Young hurt his old team with a bases clearing double to give the Orioles the 7-6 lead and victory to take a commanding 2-0 series lead. In Game Three the pitching took center stage as the fans were entertained by a good old fashioned pitcher’s duel that went the Orioles way 2-1. Baltimore had almost a full week off to prepare for the Wild Card winning and Cinderella team this season, the Kansas City Royals.
In Game One both teams were well rested and ready for the ALCS to begin as Baltimore started their ace Chris Tillman against the Royals ace James Shields. Both starting pitchers may have been a little rusty with all the extra rest and neither pitcher finished with a pretty pitching line. Tillman only lasted 4.1 innings and gave up five earned runs while Shields was also on a short leash lasting only 5.0 innings and allowing four runs. Kansas City had the lead in the ball game 5-4 when they took Shields out of the contest and handed the ball to their reliable and shutdown bullpen but rookie Brandon Finnegan allowed two hits and a run without recording an out to blow the lead for the Royals. The Royals manager Ned Yost handed the ball to Kelvin Herrera to get out of the inning and also to pitch the 7th inning while Baltimore countered with Kevin Gausman, Tommy Hunter, Andrew Miller, and Zach Britton. Wade Davis pitched the 8th inning and the 9th inning for the Royals while Darren O’Day took the ball to finish the 9th for the Orioles as the game headed into extra innings. In the top of the 10th Kansas City scored three runs off O’Day and Brian Matusz including a Mike Moustakas home run to give the Royals a three run lead heading into the bottom of the 10th. The Royals closer came in to pitch the bottom of the 10th and allowed a run to make things interesting at 8-6 Kansas City but shut the Orioles offense down for the save and a victory for the Royals. Kansas City leads the ALCS 1-0 as the Cinderella story continues.
In Game Two Kansas City sent rookie fire baller Yordano Ventura to the mound to face off with the Orioles starter Bud Norris as Baltimore looked to even the series. It looked as though the rust and days off affected these two starting pitchers as well as Norris only lasted 4.1 innings while allowing four earned runs while Ventura lasted 5.2 innings allowing four runs of his own. The Royals handed the ball to the bullpen once again and Brandon Finnegan, Kelvin Herrera, and Wade Davis shut down the Orioles offense while Brad Brach, Andrew Miller, and Darren O’Day shut down the Royals offense as the game headed into the 9th inning tied at 4-4. Kansas City decided they would win a game in nine innings this time around as Alcides Escobar and Lorenzo Cain helped the Royals score two more runs in the ninth inning setting up Greg Holland for the bottom of the ninth for the second straight night. Holland allowed a hit and recorded a strikeout in a somewhat easy inning as the Royals won the game by the score of 6-4 to take a commanding 2-0 series lead in the ALCS as the series shifts to Kansas City’s Kauffman Stadium.
10-7-14: The Baltimore Orioles won the American League East division this season and had the second best record in the AL in 2014 which means the team hosted the Detroit Tigers in the American League Division Series. Baltimore will have home field advantage throughout the series which is important for Baltimore who played extremely well all season long in Oriole Park in Camden Yards. There was not a single Orioles ticket not sold for this game as the fans filed into Camden Yards and Comerica Park for what was scheduled to be a great series between two solid teams. Baltimore went into Game One of the ALDS by sending Chris Tillaman and that powerful offense to Camden Yards to take on the Tigers. The Tigers countered with AL Cy Young candidate Max Scherzer who had his share of troubles with the Orioles. Baltimore ultimately put up 12 runs in the game and won the game by the score of 12-3 to take a 1-0 lead in the best of five series. Tillman went 5.0 IP and struck out six while giving up two runs, two solo home runs. Scherzer went 7.1 IP and struck out six of his own while allowing five runs, two of them coming on home runs.
In Game Two the Orioles used some late inning magic to stage a comeback with a bases clearing double for former Detroit Tiger Delmon Young as Baltimore once again edged Detroit by the score of 7-6 to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the series. Wei-Yin Chen started the game for Baltimore and was quickly beat up by the Tigers offense only lasting 3.5 IP and allowing five earned runs. While Justin Verlander was not exactly sharp in this game he did enough to hand the ball to his bullpen and specifically Joba Chamberlain with a sizeable lead. Joba responded by allowing three earned runs in 0.1 IP while Joakim Soria allowed the run that would blow the save and the game for the Tigers.
In Game Three Baltimore sent Bud Norris to the mound looking for the sweep while Detroit sent David Price to the mound looking to force a Game 4 in this series. Price looked awfully sharp for the Tigers in this contest but was matched out for out by Norris in a game that went scoreless into the sixth inning. In that inning Price made his only mistake of the game leaving a ball over the plate that the majors leading home run hitter Nelson Cruz took out for a two run shot giving the Orioles a 2-0 lead. Norris would get a shutdown inning in the bottom of the sixth and recorded an out in the seventh before leaving with 6.1 IP allowing just two hits while striking out six. Baltimore handed the ball to Andrew Miller to finish the 7th inning and the 8th inning and Miller shut down the powerful Tigers offense not allowing a hit or a base runner as he handed the ball to the Orioles closer Zach Britton for the bottom of the 9th inning. Detroit made things interesting in the bottom of the 9th stringing together two hits while JD Martinez collected his 5th RBI of the series to bring Detroit within one run at 2-1 but that was as close as the Tigers would get. Britton recorded the final out to give the Orioles the 2-1 lead and a 3-0 series victory and sweep in the ALDS. Baltimore is heading to the ALCS to face the Kansas City Royals while Detroit is heading home for the winter after another letdown in October.
10-1-14: The Orioles ran away with the AL East title, as Buck Showalter's club turned out to be one the best teams in all of baseball. The O's added Nelson Cruz to a one-year, $8 million deal in the offseason, which proved to be the one of the best signings of the entire offseason. Cruz hit 40 home runs to lead baseball. Baltimore's pitching staff has been effective. Since the All-Star break, O’s pitchers have the lowest ERA in baseball. Baltimore will play the Tigers in the ALDS.
9-30-14: The Baltimore Orioles started the week by signing Cuban defecting pitcher Lazaro Leyva worth a reported $725K. The team also designated relief pitcher Preston Guilmet for assignment so the team could add Alexi Casilli to the roster for the final week of the season. Baltimore made a run at the American League’s best record but fell just short to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim but the Orioles will still host at least an ALDS series against the AL Central division winning team. Baltimore will face the Detroit Tigers in the first round of the playoffs and will have home field advantage for the series. This is especially important for Baltimore as the Orioles went 50-31 this season in Oriole Park in Camden Yards. Chris Tillman is expected to be the Game One starter for that series against the Tigers Max Scherzer. The first game will be played on Thursday, October 2 as both teams get a good rest before the race for the World Series title. Baltimore finished the 2014 season with a 96-66 record and won the American League East division title handedly.
9-25-14: The Orioles are an impressive 42-20 since the All-Star break, including 15-6 in September. They have been the class of the AL East and won their first division title since 1997. The Orioles are currently 3.5 games behind the Angels for the best record in the AL. They'll look to overtake them and secure home-field advantage with two more games against the Yankees and three more games against the Blue Jays on the road.
9-23-14: The Baltimore Orioles initially announced that the team was not going to promote top first base prospect Christian Walker this season even after first baseman Chris Davis was suspended for 25 games. As you remember Davis was playing a lot of third base this season and Steve Pearce has been playing first base since Orioles regular third baseman Manny Machado went down with another knee injury. In the end the Orioles went against this announcement and purchased the contract of Walker anyway for the final two weeks of the season. The team was reluctant to purchase Walker’s contract as he does not have to be protected on the 40 man roster from the Rule 5 Draft this winter but ultimately decided to call the 2013 fourth round draft pick up. No corresponding roster move was needed as David was on the suspension list. The Orioles also told soon to be free agent J.J. Hardy that they want to resign him but warned him that they may not be able to offer the most money. Buck Schowalter told Hardy personally that the team would offer the shortstop a fair contract this winter and expressed a definite interest in keeping him on the club past the 2014 season.
9-18-14: With 11 games remaining in the 2014 regular season, the Baltimore Orioles are already AL East champions. Not many people thought they would be in this position given the other teams in their division. They beat to Blue Jays 8-2 Tuesday night to official seal the division crown. This is the first time since 1997 that the O’s have been crowned division champions.
9-16-14: The Baltimore Orioles have enjoyed the production they have received from the catching duo of Caleb Joseph and Nick Hundley this season. Hundley, who was acquired from the Padres in a midseason trade, and Joseph have accumulated a league average WAR for catchers which has lessened the loss of catcher Matt Weiters to Tommy John surgery. The Hundley deal worked out well for the Orioles but the team thinks an extension with DH Nelson Cruz may not work out as well. Cruz is 34 years old and is considered to be a defensive liability in the field with a previous steroid allegation and suspension attached to him to boot. Cruz is approaching a 40 home run season though and may end up receiving another qualifying offer after the season. Cruz signed a team friendly one year deal worth $8 million this season after declining the one year and $14.1 million offer last offseason from the Texas Rangers. This season the qualifying offer jumps to $15 million for one season and Cruz may not be willing to pass this up this time around. Baltimore ended the week by learning that Chris Davis has been suspended for 25 games after failing an amphetamine test for using Adderall. Davis will miss the rest of the regular season and the first eight games of the playoffs if Baltimore gets that far.
9-12-14: The O’s closed out last week by losing a series to the Rays after sweeping the Reds earlier in the week. They have taken two straight against Boston at Fenway this week. They are now 25-12 since the beginning of August, building their lead in the AL East from 1.5 games to 10 games during that span. They currently sit just four games behind the Angels for the best record in baseball. Nelson Cruz leads the majors and the AL with 39 home runs. His is 101 RBI trail Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera for the AL lead.
9-9-14: The Baltimore Orioles selected the contract of Joe Saunders this week as a part of roster expansions after the lefty posted a 1.50 ERA in 12 relief innings in Triple-A this season. The way the Orioles bats have been lately it may not matter who the team throws out there on the mound as Chris Davis’ bat may have finally awaken while Nelson Cruz creeps closer and closer to a 40 home run season with every passing game. Baltimore continues to ride the bats and put more and more space between them and the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays in the AL East division race. Baltimore also announced that there have been internal discussions regarding impending free agent Nick Markakis. The team has a $17.5 million option on the outfielder next season with a $2 million buyout and the team is considering the option of declining the option, paying the buyout, and offering Markakis a $15 million qualifying offer. Baltimore would not save much money going that route if Markakis accepts but they could get a first round draft pick as compensation and save $15 million if the soon to be 31 year old declined the option.
9-4-14: The Orioles are coming off of their best month of the season, as they were 19-9 with an MLB-
best plus-48 run differential in August. They scored 4.82 runs per game and posting a 3.08
ERA as a team. Their offense leads all of baseball with 176 home runs, including an MLB-high
36 from Nelson Cruz. Their bullpen has been a weapon since the addition of Andrew Miller.
Overall, Baltimore will be dangerous come October.
9-2-14: The Baltimore Orioles received some great news this week as Manny Machado’s knee surgery was deemed a success by doctors. Machado is still going to miss the remainder of the 2014 season but expects to be at full strength by Spring Training for the 2015 season after the positive prognosis this week by doctors. The Orioles will have Machado back in 2015 and may have designated hitter Nelson Cruz back as well as the team and Cruz have both expressed a mutual interest in signing an extension before his current contract expires. After the trouble Cruz had this offseason finding a deal you can see why the DH and outfielder would want to sign a deal before hitting free agency, especially after breaking out offensively in Baltimore. The Orioles finished the week and the month by adding Kelly Johnson and Michael Almanzar from the Boston Red Sox for Jemile Weeks and Ivan De Jesus and also acquired outfielder Alejandro De Aza from the Chicago White Sox for a pair of minor league pitchers.
8-27-14: The Orioles spent all of last week in Chicago After sweeping the White Sox to kick off their trip, they endured a sweep of their own at the hands of the Cubs. They still have plenty of room, with a seven game lead in the AL East standings. However, they will be without third baseman Manny Machado the rest of the season after he underwent surgery on a partially torn ligament in his right knee. The loss of Machado is a huge blow for an O’s team that is looking to make some serious noise come October.
8-26-14: The Baltimore Orioles are moving Ubaldo Jimenez to the bullpen according to manager Buck Showalter. This has to be disappointing to Orioles fans and the management after signing the right hander to a four year deal worth $50 million this winter. Another disappointment the Orioles were faced with this week was the news that third baseman Manny Machado would be lost for the rest of the 2014 season after spraining his knee and requiring another knee surgery. The struggling Chris Davis will slide into the third base position while Steve Pearce will get the bulk of the innings at first base. The Orioles defense took a huge hit with the loss of Machado and the offense will surely miss his bat as well. The Orioles ended the week losing another player by releasing Cord Phelps after designating the right handed starting pitcher for assignment. Phelps being DFA’d cleared a roster spot for starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez.
8-20-14: The Orioles have the biggest division lead in all of baseball. They are currently 8.5 games up on the New York Yankees and nine games up on the Toronto Blue Jays in the AL East standings. Losing star Manny Machado to a knee sprain hurts. However, the recent offensive surge of Jonathan Schoop could soften the blow of the Machado loss a bit. It's still all about starting pitching for the Orioles heading into the postseason.
8-19-14: The Baltimore Orioles received a scare with third baseman Manny Machado as he left a game this week against the New York Yankees with a twisted right knee. This was not the knee that kept him out of time last season and this season and required surgery in the offseason. X rays did not reveal any ligament damage so the Orioles dodged a huge bullet but will still be without their third baseman for the foreseeable future. Finally the Orioles received a minor victory in the courts this week regarding the dispute with the Washington Nationals over the MASN Network. A litigator announced that the Nationals could not demand increased rights and fees over the television network.
8-13-14: The Orioles have won six straight series. They beat the Angels and Mariners both at home and on the road before taking down the Blue Jays in Toronto and the Cardinals at home last week. Their game with the Yankees on Tuesday was suspended due to rain and will be made up on Sept. 12th. Baltimore currently holds a 6.5 game lead in the AL East over Toronto. Caleb Joseph became the first Orioles catcher and first Orioles rookie to homer in five straight games last week.
8-12-14: The Baltimore Orioles started the month by looking for some starting pitching depth and ultimately signed lefty Joe Saunders to a minor league deal to stash in Triple-A. Clay Rapada was released as the corresponding roster move for Saunders and will look to latch on with yet another team after bouncing around the league since his strong 2012 season with the New York Yankees. Speaking the Yankees they released long time Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts last week and Baltimore announced that they have no interest in a reunion with the switch hitter. Another player that could be a former Oriole is JJ Hardy who is set to be a free agent at the end of this season and has not had any discussions with the team regarding an extension.
8-6-14: Three solo home runs gave the Baltimore Orioles the major league lead in home runs, and helped them extend their lead atop the AL East. Chris Davis homered and Caleb Joseph and Jonathan Schoop also went deep back to back as the O’s beat the Toronto Blue Jays 9-3 Tuesday. The Orioles moved five games ahead of second-place Toronto. The three homers moved Baltimore ahead of Jays for the big league lead. The Orioles have hit 136 homers this season, one more than the Blue Jays.
8-5-14: The Baltimore Orioles and the Washington Nationals are in the middle of a dispute over the jointly owned Mid-Atlantic Sports Network. The jointly owned television channel has been heavily disputed by both teams and the battle will head to litigation. The Orioles are leading the American League East by a comfortable margin this season but surprisingly were quiet at this year’s trading deadline. The Orioles did acquire left handed reliever Andrew Miller from the Boston Red Sox for a minor league pitcher but made no significant additions to the team. The Orioles feel they have enough to win the division and will instead look to make marginal upgrades during the August waiver trading deadline.
7-30-14: The Baltimore Orioles have inquired about the Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester this week. While Baltimore is not likely to trade away Kevin Gausman, Dylan Bundy, Hunter Harvey, or Eduardo Rodriguez they may be willing to part with one or more of their pitchers to acquire the rental. The Orioles were also in attendance for the latest Cuban defecting showcase as Rusney Castillo worked out for 28 teams across Major League Baseball. Baltimore liked what they saw so much this weekend in Miami that the team is arranging a private workout for the 27 year old outfielder. The Orioles continue to hold onto the top spot in the American League East division with a 58-46 record which is good for a three game lead over the Toronto Blue Jays and a four game lead over the New York Yankees.
7-28-14: Although some of Baltimore’s divisional foes have played very well since the All-Star break, the Orioles have kept a healthy lead in the American League East. With their two victories to begin their series against the Seattle Mariners, they have won four of their last five games. On Thursday, Wei-Yin Chen threw eight scoreless innings to win his fourth straight start.
7-24-14: Miguel Gonzalez took a two-hit shutout into the eighth inning, Jonathan Schoop hit a home run and J.J. Hardy hit two RBI doubles as the Orioles beat the Los Angeles Angels 4-2 on Tuesday night. Zach Britton pitched a perfect ninth for his 18th save in 21 chances. Britton has allowed eight runs and fanned 27 in 29 1/3 innings over 29 appearances since taking over as closer in mid-May. The O’s have a four game lead over New York and Toronto atop the AL East.
7-21-14: The Baltimore Orioles have traded first baseman Brett Wallace back to the Toronto Blue Jays this week for a marginal return that has yet to be reported. The Orioles have also had discussions with the Philadelphia Phillies this week regarding starting pitcher AJ Burnett. Burnett would add a serious veteran presence to the mound as the Orioles make a playoff push. Burnett has limited no trade protection and a very complicated player mutual option for the 2015 season that could pay him at least $7.5 million in 2015 if he decides to keep pitching. Burnett has AL East experience with the New York Yankees and his family lives in Maryland so this may be a perfect fit for both sides.
7-19-14: For the first time since 1997, the Orioles came out of the All-Star break with the American League East’s best record. Even though they allowed the Oakland Athletics to walk off with a 5-4 victory on Friday as Zach Britton gave up a three-run home run to Josh Donaldson, Baltimore still owns a four-game lead in the division.
7-17-14: Picked by many to win the AL pennant, the Rays have been among the biggest disappointments of the first half. They've been playing much better of late, and a series win over the Blue Jays last weekend has them riding a 13-5 streak into the All-Star break. David Price was expected to be the prize of the trade deadline back when Tampa was sitting on the worst record in baseball. The first couple weeks of the second half could play a major role in his future with the franchise.
7-17-14: With series wins over the Nationals and Yankees to close out the first half, the Orioles have now won seven of their last eight series played. That has given them a four-game lead in the AL East at the break. Kevin Gausman could be poised for a big second half after posting a 2.36 ERA in his last six starts. Chris Davis and Manny Machado both fell well short of expectations in the first half, but the offense held its own. If both Davis and Machado can get things going, the O’s could be the favorites in the AL East.
7-15-14: The Baltimore Orioles are said to be in the market for a starting pitcher and seem like the likeliest landing spot for Baltimore native and Philadelphia Phillies pitcher AJ Burnett. AJ has AL East experience with the New York Yankees and has first place experience with the Yankees and Pittsburgh Pirates. Ubaldo Jimenez has been placed on the 15 day DL with a sprained ankle so Burnett would be a welcomed addition if the Orioles would pay the salary and the prospect package to Philadelphia. The Orioles especially need some depth as Randy Wolf has opted out of his deal and has cleared out his locker in Triple-A to end the week. The Orioles sit at 51-42 at the All Star Break to sit at first place at the break for the first time since 1997. That team won the division that season in case you were wondering.
7-14-14: Recently, the Orioles have had some important extra-inning victories that have helped them extend their lead in the American League East. Although they have had some postponements, Baltimore’s clutch hitting has not been affected. Manny Machado, whose bat has been scorching over the past couple of weeks, scored the game-winning run on Friday.
7-10-14: The Orioles came into Tuesday night’s game in Washington having won seven of their last eight. However, rain postponed the game until Aug. 4. The crosstown rivals will continue the home-and-home series in Baltimore on Wednesday night. Bud Norris, who was activated from the disabled list, will start Wednesday. The O’s currently have a 2 ½ game lead over Toronto atop the AL East.
7-7-14: The Orioles are on the verge of their longest winning streak of 2014. However, the Boston weather is not making things easy on Buck Showalter’s squad. With their July 4 game being postponed, the Orioles take on the Red Sox in a day-night doubleheader on Saturday. Steve Pearce, who is on his way to several new single-season career-highs this year, led Baltimore to a four-game sweep of the Texas Rangers earlier in the week.
7-3-14: Nelson Cruz hit his 26th home run on his 34th birthday, as the Orioles breezed past the struggling Texas Rangers 8-3 Tuesday night. In five career games on his birthday, Cruz is 7 for 19 with two homers. This was Cruz’s third home run in his last seven games. He’s now only seven short of his career high of 33, set in 2009 with Texas. Steven Pearce and Caleb Joseph also went deep for the Orioles, who will at least get a split of the four-game series after winning the first two. The O’s are just one game back of Toronto for the AL East lead.
7-2-14: The Baltimore Orioles have a decision looming on outfielder Nolan Reimold. Reimold is hitting .326/.433/.522 at Double-A and has an opt-out clause built into his contract. If Reimold is not added to the active roster by Monday he will either be released or placed on waivers where he would likely be claimed after a strong season.
6-30-14: The Orioles will finally finish a full month above .500. By splitting their doubleheader with the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday, the birds clinched their first month above .500 in exactly one year. On Wednesday, Nelson Cruz’s game-tying grand slam in the eighth inning helped Baltimore get to extra innings and steal the win.
6-26-14: Miguel Gonzalez fell to 4-5 on the year as the Orioles were defeated by the White Sox 4-2 Tuesday night. Gonzalez gave up three runs and a career-high tying nine hits in five innings of work for Buck Showalter’s club. This was his second start since returning from a 17-day stint on the disabled list with a strained right oblique. For the second straight game he failed to get into the sixth inning. Manny Machado will have a hearing Wednesday on his appeal of a five-game suspension for throwing a bat on the field.
6-24-14: The Baltimore Orioles got the news they never wanted to get when they learned that catcher Matt Weiters would have to undergo Tommy John surgery on his ailing throwing elbow. Weiters had originally tried to rehab and rest the elbow while being a designated hitter but ultimately could not avoid going under the knife. Weiters will miss the rest of the 2014 season and is expected to be out of baseball for at least nine months. The Orioles ruined Tino Martinez Day at Yankee Stadium by clobbering their American League East rivals and even beat Masahiro Tanaka on Old Timers Day in the Bronx to take two of three from one of the teams they are chasing in the East.
6-18-14: The Orioles are thankful for instant replay at least for one night. Chris Davis hit a replay-delayed grand slam as the Orioles beat the Tampa Bay Rays 7-5 on Tuesday night. Davis was awarded the grand slam off Rays starter Erik Bedard during a five-run third-inning after video review showed his drive struck the foul pole. Davis now has three career grand slams. Baltimore C Matt Wieters had season-ending right elbow ligament replacement surgery. The O’s are four games back of Toronto for the AL East lead.
6-17-14: The Baltimore Orioles got a bit of bad news regarding Matt Weiters and his throwing program while trying to avoid surgery and rehab the injury. Reports state that the rehab is not going well and it is looking more and more likely that Weiters will not be able to avoid surgery this season. The Orioles are also said to be interested in moving designated hitter Delmon Young in a deal as he has lost most of his playing time to first basemen Steve Pearce. Young is batting .286/.318/.369 this season and may provide some pop off an American League team’s bench this summer.
6-10-14: The Baltimore Orioles may have gotten the best bang for their buck this offseason, literally, with the signing of Nelson Cruz. Cruz is leading the major leagues through the first two months of the season with 20 home runs after declining a qualifying offer and signing a one year deal worth $8 million with Baltimore. Cruz has overtaken David Ortiz of the Red Sox in All Star Game voting for the designated hitter, a position Ortiz has held for quite some time now. The Orioles also purchased the contract of Johan Santana and immediately added him to the 15 day disabled list to keep him from exercising his opt out clause in his minor league contract. The Orioles were the only team that did not have a draft pick on the first day of the 2014 MLB First Year Players Draft on Thursday but they did draft Bobby Bonilla’s son Brandon Bonilla late in the draft. The Orioles also lost Johan Santana for the rest of the season after tearing his Achilles tendon, at least it wasn’t a third shoulder capsule.
6-3-14: The Baltimore Orioles are said to be showing the most interest, albeit in a very early market, for Cubs starting pitcher and ERA leader Jeff Samardzija. The Cubs had one of their top talent evaluators at one of Hunter Harvey’s, a prospect in the Orioles system, starts in Class-A Ball. The Orioles lost one of their minor league arms with major league experience as reliever Luis Ayala has opted out of his minor league deal and will look for a major league deal elsewhere. The Orioles will look to restock the farm from either a Samardzija trade or the loss of Ayala through the draft but that is going to be increasingly difficult after giving up three draft picks in this year’s draft to acquire Ubaldo Jimenez, Nelson Cruz, and Bud Norris. The Orioles will not have a pick until the third round and will only have $2.2 million in cap room to sign players this season.
5-28-14: The Baltimore Orioles are still looking for a bat to help the club with the shoulder injury to catcher Matt Weiters that will keep him from catching for the rest of the season. Kendrys Morales makes less sense now than he did three weeks ago now that Weiters will have to be the Orioles designated hitter for the rest of the season. The Orioles filled the hole a bit with the acquisition of Nick Hundley from the San Diego Padres for relief pitcher Troy Patton. Last week we spoke of the Orioles being willing to trade Patton for a catcher to replace Weiters and it seems that Hundley will now be the starting catcher in Baltimore. The Orioles have to pay the rest of his $4 million in salary this season and own a $5 million club option on Hundley for the 2015 season.