Lackey fits the bill
Most Orioles fans would probably agree that pending free agent John Lackey would look pretty good at the front of the O's rotation next year, though I wouldn't get your hopes up. Can't imagine the Angels letting him get away, and if they do, there has been talk that he might like to go home to Texas if he doesn't stay in Southern California.
Still, you never know what might happen during the free agent period, and money generally does most of the talking. The Orioles need a solid veteran pitcher to help mold a real rotation out of all those promising young arms, and Lackey fits that description almost perfectly. He's a consistent right-hander whose ratios have held firm for the past five years. He won 19 games in 2007 and his ability to handle the responsibilities of a front-rotation guy was preordained way back in his rookie year, when he became only the second rookie starter in baseball history to win the seventh game of the World Series.
Would he come here for the right price? Who knows? But if you want to grasp at some straws, this comment last night proves that he has noticed the change in the outlook for the rebuilding Orioles.
"Honestly they put some pressure on me," Lackey said. "They had some traffic on the bases and guys got some hits. I was able to make some big pitches to get out of a couple of innings with no damage, and they've got a nice lineup. They've got some pieces there that are going to be pretty good in the future."
Saturday silence: Sorry to duck out on Saturday after posting my column. I went to the Talbot Kennel Club dog show in Easton to scout the next member of the family. Lost our best friend of 16 years a couple of weeks ago (definitely don't want to do this summer over again) and are just starting to consider a new dog. Then I took everybody out for a big night afterward to thank them for waiting on my helpless self for the past month. Hope you all understand. I'm back at it today.
Associated Press photo