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December 3, 2011

Will Duquette's late hiring hamper Orioles' ability to add pieces this week?

We continue our five-part look at the biggest questions facing new executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette and the Orioles heading into the winter meetings.

Will Duquette's late hiring hamper the team's ability to add pieces this week?

It certainly will be interesting to see. Duquette said he doesn't believe so.

“We know what our needs are, and we are in a position to address them,” Duquette said. “Other clubs that had their GMs in place, they are probably a little further down the track. But we've got some good people to add, and we have time to do it.”

The truth is there are plenty of players -- via free agency and the trade market -- who are still available. But the question that can't be answered yet is whether other teams are much further ahead in their negotiations and will simply wrap things up this week.

There is a bad precedent here for the Orioles. In December 2002, Jim Beattie and Mike Flanagan were hired essentially as co-GMs and basically went right to the winter meetings with hopes they could land a quality starting pitcher. Three weeks later, they signed left-hander Omar Daal to a two-year, $7.5 million contract.

Daal pitched in just 19 games for the Orioles, winning four times, before injuries ended his career. That signing will always be viewed as a panic move by a tandem that was thrust into a quick turnaround and was left with few options.

Duquette has had more time to prepare, and the market seems to have slowed some in the past decade.

Posted by Dan Connolly at 7:00 PM | | Comments (2)
        

Comments

Getting the front office right is more important than any moves they make for this year. Since he doesn't seem to be of a mind to overpay for anything yet, I'm not worried that he'll miss anything because of his late hire.

There is always that chance when your choices are like the o's but I believe you have to sign numbers and let Buck and competition settle the pecking order especially in starting pitching and bull pen. That includes the use of JJ get buck the arms to look at let him choose the way to use him.

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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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