O's: Who'll be on first?
Here's all we really know about the first base situation: The Orioles want a right-handed hitter or a switch-hitter to fill the opening at first base left by Kevin Millar, who apparently will not get the opportunity to fill it himself.
The Orioles are leaning away from Millar, even though he seems amenable to a part-time role and he's fun to have around. The free-agent names that have been afloat are Ty Wigginton, Richie Sexson and Rocco Baldelli, and club officials were not totally ruling out any of them yesterday, though it now appears Baldelli will sign with the Red Sox. There also are some interesting trade possibilities, including Cleveland's Ryan Garko or one of the Royals' first basemen -- either 22-year-old Billy Butler or 28-year-old project Ryan Shealy.
Several readers have written in to inquire about the possibility of the Orioles acquiring Nick Swisher, who appears to be extra baggage in New York now that the Yankees have brought in Mark Teixeira. The O's showed interest in Swisher before the Chicago White Sox dealt him to the Yankees, so it wouldn't be a surprise if they inquired about him again.
What would be a surprise would be a significant trade between two longtime division rivals, though it's possible the Yankees don't consider the O's enough of a threat right now to worry about a deal coming back to haunt them in the AL East standings. He's a switch-hitter who has averaged 25 home runs over the past four seasons, so he probably wouldn't come cheap if there is any chance of him coming here at all.