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October 16, 2010

AFL update, other Oriole tidbits

First, some assorted stats from the Orioles’ prospects playing for the Scottsdale Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League:

Position players
Xavier Avery 4-for-13 (.308) 3 runs 2 BBs 4 Ks 3 SBs
Ryan Adams 6-for-12 (.500) 1 HR 7 RBIs 2 runs 1 BB 3 Ks
Caleb Joseph 3-for-5 (.600) 2 runs 1 Ks
Greg Miclat 4-for-8 (.500) 1 2B 1 BB
Tyler Townsend 1-for-4 (.250) 2 RBIs 1 K

Oliver Drake 3 IP 2 ERs (6.00) 1 hit 1 BB 4 Ks
Pat Egan 3 IP 1 ER (3.00) 3 hits 2 Ks
Kam Mickolio 1 IP 0 ER 1 hit 2 Ks
Wynn Pelzer 1 IP 0 ER 1 hit 1 K

Now, a couple of other things: As expected, the Orioles have not started serious negotiations with any of their prospective free agents. At this point, I don’t expect them to sign anybody during the exclusive negotiation period. It’s no secret that Ty Wigginton, Cesar Izturis, Koji Uehara and Corey Patterson are all candidates to return, but it appears that they’ll have a chance to shop their services elsewhere first.

Bench coach Jeff Datz remains a candidate to stay on Buck Showalter's staff for the 2011 season as team officials were very pleased with the job he did in working with young catcher Matt Wieters behind the plate. However, if it doesn’t work out here, don’t be surprised if Datz joins Eric Wedge in Seattle. Datz worked on Wedge’s staff for several seasons in Cleveland.

According to reports out of Toronto, former Orioles' interim manager Juan Samuel is expected to get interviewed for the Blue Jays’ managerial vacancy. Samuel has also been mentioned as a candidate in both Pittsburgh and Milwaukee, but as of now, there have been no formal interviews scheduled with him in either place.

Posted by Jeff Zrebiec at 1:17 AM | | Comments (9)


I am really hoping Samuel lands in Toronto and he'll get to impart some of his acquired coaching skilz on the Blue Jays.

I'm really surprised that buck is taking so long to make coaching decisions. i thought he prides himself on preparation
I'mnot sure i want any of the O's FA back. paterson is redundant to Pie and reimold needs to be on the roster next year. Koji has his moments but he's too shaky physically. Wiggy isn't going to be happy if they sign a 1st and 3rd baseman..I want a better hitting SS and there's some out there.

Some people are saying we should trade guthrie and Scott. We'll never get the value back fr these guys they give the O's.Plus they're good team guys.We need to trade Tillamn for somebody, a position player preferably..Wouldn't mind seeing Pie or Jones traded either.

I can understand the Orioles waiting on Wiggington (since the team is hoping to upgrade at 1B and 3B, and after being a starter in2010, he may not want to return as a utility guy), Izturis (to see if they can get a better bat at ss either through trade or FA) and Patterson (because even though he performed well, he's more likely seen as a reserve). However, why are they not being proactive on Uehara? Once they finally "got it" and placed him in the role he should have been in from day 1, he was lights out...throwing strikes and dominating hitters. Waiting generally drives up the price once more competition enters the bidding for a player's services. Do the Orioles think they can realistically upgrade/improve upon his results if Uehara leaves? They should lock him up now if possible. An ancillary benefit to doing so would be the positive message it would send to the universe of potential Pacific Rim ballplayers who play in markets the Orioles are trying hard to cultivate.

It's great to hear that the guys are doing well in the AFL. Avery, Adams, Miclat, and Townsend might be a couple years away, but with a good AFL they'd seem to be indicating they're right on track with their development...1.5-3 years to go.

And what's with people trying to get rid of Jones and Izturiz?

Gold Glove defense not seen as important anymore? For shame... "Defense up the middle" is as important to Winning as slugging 3 & 4 hitters. Besides, Izzy had his career worst year offensively...he will not be that bad again. And "bad" being .250 in the AL East for Gold Glovers...totally acceptable. There are 8 other batters in a line-up that need to improve their bats...Izzy gets the defensive "pass" to hit 9th.

Just got back today from Scottsdale, Az. Had my O's cap and shirt. Watched the games Tuesday and Wednesday. Both great games. Ryan Adams was superb in the field besides his hitting. He was like a bulldog out there. If his hitting keeps the we (o's) have a 3rd baseman. Had to leave early Thursday night to finish packing to leave Friday so I missed the final score. Had a good time with the locals around me. They couldn't understand me driving down. They just didn't understand. haha.

Pitching and defense win championships .... so, dont re-sign our gold glove SS? Mmmmm....

Not surprised Adams is killing the ball in AZ. He can rake it but he needs a position such as LF

I don't understand the often-mentioned fear that Uehara is shaky physically. That seems to belong entirely to his experiment as a starter, and that period is clearly over. As a reliever, and especially as the primary closer, he was available every time he was needed, and was among the most effective pitchers in the game. His numbers are comparable to Brian Wilson's for the partial season Uehara closed. Are we going to make a play for Wilson? For Rivera? If not, who else would we want?

Trade Guthrie and Scott? You trade players while they still have value, which applies to both. They are both past 32 and coming off good years. Why wait until they are failing? What would you get in return then? Izturis is better than average defensively, which is good for young pitchers, but Hardy (should he become available) had a better defensive efficiency rating this year and, even though the Twins were disappointed, he still hit better than Izturis. Jones is not that great defensively... at least he wasn't this year... but he is a right-handed hitter with occasional power and the Orioles tilt to the left. I'd include Pie or Angle in a trade package before I'd offer Jones. Tillman has mostly unproven potential, though he showed occasional flashes this year, making him a bit of a gamble for the receiving team. The rest depends on who is obtained to play first and third.

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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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