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July 16, 2010

Trade winds blowing at Camden Yards

Two weeks before the July 31 trade deadline, it is clear that infielders Ty Wigginton and Miguel Tejada have emerged as the Orioles' two biggest trade chips.

There are multiple teams in on Wigginton, including the Philadelphia Phillies, Texas Rangers and New York Yankees. The Orioles and Phillies have been discussing Wigginton for several weeks, but Philadelphia also has interest in Tejada. Placido Polanco is getting ready to come off the disabled list and he could go back to second base in place of the injured Chase Utley. The Phillies then could acquire Tejada or Wigginton to play third.

The Rangers' interest in Wigginton is also legit, and they have a scout at Camden Yards tonight. I'm guessing that with Justin Smoak being traded in the Cliff Lee deal, the Rangers could use Wigginton in a first-base platoon with the left-handed hitting Chris Davis.

Either way, I'd be shocked if Wigginton is still an Oriole come Aug. 1. There is a lot of interest out there. I think the Orioles would do well to get two mid-level prospects back for him.

Tejada, I'm not as sure about. But I know there are teams that think Tejada would really elevate his game in a pennant race.

The Yankees, Rays, Astros, Dodgers and Mets are among the teams that have scouts at tonight's game.

Posted by Jeff Zrebiec at 5:52 PM | | Comments (37)


What about Corey Patterson? Assuming Felix Pie stays healthy, it would make sense to put Patterson on the trading block considering his recent offensive success.

Jeff Z's reply: Wouldn't surprise me if there is some interest in Patterson, but he'd be used probably as a fourth or fifth outfielder in most situations and teams don't give up much for a reserve outfielder.

It's sad when your team's biggest trade chips are...

...a 32-year-old utility player that doesn't play solid defense at a single position and is hitting .204 with one home run and a .566 OPS since May 23rd...


...a 36-year-old third baseman who makes a mockery of the position with his awful defense and .376 SLG%...

Can't wait to see what Andy snags for these two pieces of baseball garbage. Too bad the Cubs aren't buying this year.

But no worries. There is no timetable. The barn isn't on fire. The players are doing a nice job.

Andy should really look into a career in politics after he's finished running the O's further and further into obscurity.

Notice Josh Bell is out of the lineup tonight. What gives? What's the point in shuttling this guy back and forth to sit on the bench?

Also, Jeff, wanted to know if you saw the article in Business Week about the O's. The authors seem to think a team like the Orioles should start some of their games at 5 PM to encourage more kids coming to games. They claim that winning isn't the most important factor in fan satisfaction. Interesting ideas ... here's the link, would love to hear your thoughts.

Jeff Z's reply: I'll have to look at it closely and get back to you Kenny. I'm geting ready for the game.

This is absurd. Trading nothing for nothing is becoming a yearly occurence and is starting to get really old, and there is no way a legitimate prospect from any sane team will come in this direction for either Wiggy or Miggy.

From now on, let's not deal guys unless we get actual talent in return. Therefore, I would suggest that we keep both Tejada and Wigginton and try the radical new idea of attempting to win as many games ourselves as possible.

Can you say attendance drop? Starting games at 5 oclock to get the kids there would be hard to do for the parents of those kids. I have trouble getting to a 7:05 game, there is no way I could make a 5 or 5:30 game.

Re: starting at 5. Unlike the above fan, I am self-employed and would really appreciate an opportunity to rearrange a couple of work hours and come to a 5 p.m. start. Doing it a lot would be crazy, but if there were three or four of these a year it would be special for me, and would really stand out in the spring when I'm looking over the list of 81 games. Maybe I'd be the only one positively influenced by a 5 pm start and 500 other fans would be negative, but figuring that out is why they pay marketing people.

all of this stuff about trading tejada or wigionton is nothing more than hot air and stuff to fill empty spots in the paper. whatwould we get for tejada anothr career minor leaguer ty wigionton, nothing more than a down the road prospect who might not ever make it to the majors. like one of the poseters siad noting for nothing.

One of the things I think went wrong right from the start of spring... no competition for any positions. most of the players went into spring KNOWING they had the job. who was gonna light a fire under said a**es? not Trembley,this team has excelled to near 500 ball since Interim Juan has taken over! so, what I mean is .... I still have hope that this team ,my beloved Baltimore Orioles will rebound. next year this time I hope to see the stands full of some of the best fans in baseball...Orioles fans

The headline reads, "Orioles hope to avoid matching futility of 1988 team." Then you read that they want to trade Wigginton, our top HR hitter and RBI man, and Tejada who is a solid major leaguer for "two mid-level prospects." Few top level prospects ever become productive major leaguers, much less "two mid-level prospects." Our AAA team at Norfolk is full of players good enough for AAA ball, but not good enough to play in the majors. So how does this help this team for the future and how does it help this team avoid the record fo the 1988 team? If you get two mid-level prospects and put them in the lineup, do you think they are going to out perform Wigginton? Josh Bell our top prospect can't outperform Tejada, much less some other team's cast offs. That is just what we need is two more guys who can hit .229 with no power.

Trade Patterson fast. He's playing way above his normal level. He's gonna come down to earth, hopefully in another city. Tejada's defense is right at average for third basemen, and he would be a good addition for a contending team. I think he has more value than Wigginton. There are rumors of a Guthrie deal (go for it!). Winning this year does not matter anymore.
If the Orioles are lucky, Bryce Harper won't reach agreement with the Nationals... and the Orioles will get a crack at him next year.

I think they should just name Billy Preston manager. Then, instead of those boring post-game press conferences, he could just sing, "Nothing from Nothing Leaves Nothing." It's got a catchy beat, and it's easy to dance to. And it would sum up things nicely in about three minutes. Really liven things up. Wouldn't even have to take questions. BTW, I hear that Trembley's cold-as-stone performances in the post-mortems after each loss have earned him consideration for the role of the corpse in "Weekend at Bernie's IV".

DonM: "If the Orioles are lucky....." now that was funny.

Aren't wiggington and tejadas contracts expiring? Would we receive supplemental picks for them? Seems as good of deal as a trade, tho maybe the Os plan to resign both of them.


It all depends on what type of free agent they will be. And that formula is based on two-year performances and compared to other players at similar positions. It's possible they'll be B free agents, meaning a compensatory pick. But they won't be A, which would yield the Orioles a 1st rounder

Its time the organization gave some serious thought to putting a pitching package together in an effort to cement 1st base. Just please, no Glen Davis, scenarios'. I don't think I would survive it.

Astros....why ?

Trade C Patt, he has a slump coming. His timing was waaayyyy off last night. Strike while you can probably get....something for him

We should trade Guthrie as well. He will pitch well in the NL, but he's mediocre to poor in the AL East. He would probably yield our best return. This club needs to add add add

Jeff Z's reply: Every team has a scout who is responsible for other Major League teams just to file reports on that organization when the season is over. It's not all trade deadline related.

Sorry but I see no purpose or value for that matter to move two good hitters for marginal prospects. We are taking another step back. Better move: hang on to them and get the draft picks in 2011

QUITE A rebuilding plan they have. Trading their best offensive weapon, a journeyman;
for so so prospects. Do the O's not have a minor league
system of any value?

Keep what the Orioles have and pick up some young veterans in free agency. A certified slugger and 2 starting pitchers would do wonders for this club. Just look at the Orioles past clubs that made the playoffs or even more. This will show you what it takes and it shows what this team is missing. Give the Free agent player the money he wants and the rest will take care of itself. Buck Show may require this to be done if he wants to work in Baltimore. He knows this is the only way to do it. The people calling for trades are spinning their wheels. The Orioles need some big fat tires on this vehicle.

"It's sad when your team's biggest trade chips are..blah blah blah)"

I see nothing sad about it.
But if we're stupid enough to trade Tejada AND/OR Wigginton then we deserve nothing in return because both of these guys are invaluable to this team.

Did you see Wiggy leg out that double last night ?
Did you see Tejada, at this point in his career, continuing to add the element of patience to his at-bats ? And did you see the diving catch he made at 3B ?

This kind of play is contageous... and these two veterans have shown up every day and been exempliary for the younger guys.
Wigginton is the best utility guy we've had since Mora first came here.
I say keep them both and re-sign them both.

RE:Billy Preston...
That would be a real news breaker since Preston died several years ago.

That's the thing..... Patterson is NOT playing over his head.
Nor was he playing over his head four years ago when he stole over 40 bases for the Orioles.
They blundered by non-tendering him and he played in limbo for a couple of years. I think the guy was truly hurt that the O's didn't seem to want him back after he worked so hard.
Now he's on his second chance and he's helped the club immensely.

I don't subscribe much to the theory of a player "playing over his head.
If a guy has the tools to hit a home run off a tough pitcher, or make a great catch , or throw a no-hitter one time, then he's got the tools to do it again.
THAT'S the part of the game which Yogi Berra was refering to as "half-mental".
The performance part is physical. The ability to duplicate the performance again and again is mental.
Some guys take longer to develop the mental part. I think Patterson was on his way to doing it though, when he hit a roadblock..... the Orioles didn't invite him back. I believe he was very hurt by that.

I wish the Orioles had Adam Dunn and Ryan Zimmerman.

What the O,s don,t need is Gonzo up here throwing more games away! Just face it Andy this guy is another one of your mistakes.

" Just please, no Glen Davis, scenarios'. I don't think I would survive it. "

Just what do you mean by this, anyway? At the time the Glenn Davis trade was made, most everyone thought it was a great pickup for the Orioles. The fact that Davis went to on to spectacularly underperform and be injured a lot certainly was not expected from his performance in the big leagues up to that point...

So when you say, "no Glenn Davis scenarios", what are you saying? "Please, don't trade for any All-Star caliber sluggers, on the chance they might play well below expectations, be hurt on the field a lot, and get their jaw broken in a bar fight?"

I'm struggling to understand your point...what player(s) would making a trade for constitute a "Glenn Davis scenario"?

Keith, you forgot his getting smacked upside the head by a foul ball while sitting in the dugout mining his own business.

Anyway, here's what scares me - they go out and actually luck into a top-notch free agent and lose their first draft pick. The problem is that their first draft pick next June will be the first draft pick, period. As in the first overall pick; they can pick anyone they wish in the entire country. Next year's Strasburg is ours.

Unless it's Pujols, there is nobody worth giving that up, least of all Prince Fielder.

What about Koji? He has no future with the O's and seem like he might be worth a gamble for by a contender. The Mets for instance need help in the middle innings and you might get 2 good months out of Koji. He has shown, that when healthy he can get people out.

Jeff Z's reply: He's throwing in the mid to high 80's, he can't go multiple innings and he's can't pitch on back-to-back days for most part. He also doesn't do well in hot weather, and he still has a good bit of money remaining on his contract. Translation, you're not getting anything for him unless you just give him away.

"The plan" has come to this?

What is needed is an industrial strength broom. After it is applied to the roster it needs to be applied to the front office.

You want to encourage anyone to go to the games, try winning!!!!! It seems to work most of the time.
Enough of the trade talk. Hold on to what they have and try to spend some money, that they don't have, next year.

Fang, I'm pretty sure you can't lose a first round pick in the top half for signing a free agent, regardless of his status. Not sure exactly how it works, but I think it has something to do with all those compensation picks at the end of the first round every year.

Things are so bad right now for all Orioles Fans that we all need to enter a time machine and be transported to another era of Orioles History just to recover from this current regime. When will they ever get a clue?

@Bearthebirdfan: Trembley was a pale imitation of a living person, and he was manager. So, why not Preston? Why do you want to exclude him just because he's dead? That sounds like some sort of employment discrimination lawsuit waiting to happen. We could just play his video after games instead of having the press conference. And, if you're not on board for that, I still suggest "Nothing From Nothing Leaves Nothing" as the official new Orioles theme song.

Wow - There is intelligent life in Baltimore.
Bear the Birdfan = Manager

Fang & nobull run the front office

Uncle Goose = bench coach

anonymous = owner, no, sorry, he just reminded me of all the people who let this happen (this = the O's)

we won't lose the first pick...the team we sign them from will get a supp plus our second rounder assuming it is a type-a free agent we "luck into." Plus we should have 2 top five picks unless we actually get machado signed.

Thank you to Kenny from Pikesville - the article you referenced was great, as was another by the same authors. Kind of reminded me of the Billy Bean (Moneyball) style of thought; as in really thinking creatively and therefore creating a different reality. Love it!!!

easywriter01: Good points all.

But tell the truth...... you really didn't know he was dead, did you ? :)))

" Just please, no Glen Davis, scenarios'. I don't think I would survive it. "

Just what do you mean by this, anyway? At the time the Glenn Davis trade was made, most everyone thought it was a great pickup for the Orioles. The fact that Davis went to on to spectacularly underperform and be injured a lot certainly was not expected from his performance in the big leagues up to that point...

So when you say, "no Glenn Davis scenarios", what are you saying? "Please, don't trade for any All-Star caliber sluggers, on the chance they might play well below expectations, be hurt on the field a lot, and get their jaw broken in a bar fight?"

I'm struggling to understand your point...what player(s) would making a trade for constitute a "Glenn Davis scenario"?

Bear -

That has to be the most ridiculous post I've ever seen.

Did you just use "Miguel Tejada" and "patience" in the same sentence?

Are you kidding me?

Tejada is the epitome of the "you can't walk off the island" Dominican.

A couple of points for you:

- Tejada has never walked more than 66 times, even when he was one of the better hitters in the game.

- Tejada hasn't walked more than 24 times since 2007.


And no, I didn't see Wigginton leg out a double last night. But that's nice that he hit one. Now he's got six doubles to go along with a .212 average and one home run in his last 43 games.


And Patterson isn't playing over his head? Really?

Patterson '00-'09: 3495 at bats, .252/.290/.404

Patterson '10: 205 at bats, .283/.329/.415

I'll take the 3495 at bat sample size over the 205 at bat sample size.

And in response to Patterson being "hurt" about not being invited back:

Patterson's first shot with the O's in '06: .276/.314/.443

Patterson's second shot with the O's in '07: .269/.304/.386

So why, exactly, with an OBP close to dipping under .300 and a SLG% south of .400, did he deserve a third shot after 2007?

You can't just say things without ignoring the facts Bear. When you do that, you don't make any sense.

I'm getting a little tired of your persistent assumptions that anytime you disagree with someone's statement, it's THEIR statement, and not yours which doesn't make sense.

From your responses to my latest post, it is very obvious that you do not read very crefully or comprehensively.

I made a statement about Tejada "at this point in his career" actually becoming more patient.
So in response, you list statistics about his historic lack of patience.
Well, HELLO......... I think we all understood that already...... that's why I found it unusual as well as commendable that he's now, AT THIS POINT IN HIS CAREER, displaying more patience.
Bold type that time, not brooks.
Maybe you caught it that time.

I stand by my statements about Patterson as well. I happen to know how he felt when the Orioles non-tendered him and that his career took a nosedive immediately after that and he thought about leaving the sport because he had worked very hard and done a decent job for the Orioles only to have them not invite him back.
Your numbers don't mean a damned thing concerning this issue, not brooks.

I'm talking about a man's pride and passion for the game.
Even the best players have fluctuating numbers and performance lapses.
Only with the best players, even their low times are acceptable because their overall standards are higher than those of a marginal player.

With a marginal player struggles, the numbers look much worse.

The thing about Patterson is that he's shown repeatedly that he has the physical ability to do a lot of things on a baseball field and do them well.
I talked about the mental role in the maturation of any player and how I felt Patterson was working hard at developing that when the Orioles non-tendered him.

Did you miss that, too ?

I've maintained respect for you through our disagreements, not brooks.

But lately, you talk down to people and pretty much try to pass yourself off as the resident expert on this blog.

Before you criticize my statements in the future, I suggest you read them comprehensively enough to actually know what it is you're criticizing.

As far as I'm concerned, you were way off the mark in this latest response to my post and proved without a doubt that you're not always a careful reader.

I'll tell you something else you're not.....

You're not close to being as authoritative as you seem to think you are.

Bear -

Tejada's 2010 OBP is .316, which is two points better than his career low. How's that for "AT THIS POINT IN HIS CAREER"?

And who cares about Patterson's physical ability? The fact of the matter is that he has zero patience, and that is what's going to come back to get him this year, as it has every other year in his career.

And that's fine if you think that Patterson was working hard at developing with the O's. But, again, the fact is that he wasn't developing. After a decent year in '06, Patterson was far worse in every single offensive category in '07. Why should a developing team give a guy like that another chance after said guy already had several chances and didn't perform?

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About the bloggers
A Baltimore native, Dan Connolly has been covering sports for 14 years, and baseball and the Orioles for 10 seasons, including the past six with The Sun. His first year covering baseball on a daily basis was Cal Ripken Jr.'s final season as a player. It's believed that is just a coincidence.

Steve Gould is an assistant sports editor for The Sun, overseeing Orioles coverage. The Columbia native joined The Sun as a sports copy editor in 2006 after graduating from the University of Maryland.

Peter Schmuck has been covering baseball for a lot longer than Steve Gould has been on this earth. He is now a general sports columnist, but has been a beat writer covering three major league teams (the Dodgers, Angels and Orioles) and also spent a decade as the Sun's national baseball writer. If you want more of his insight on the Orioles and other sports issues, check out his personal blog -- The Schmuck Stops Here.

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