Orioles: Show us a little of the money
There was speculation in the New York Post over the weekend that the Orioles would be one of the big spenders at this Winter Meetings. We can only hope my favorite New York tabloid knows something I don’t, because everything I’m hearing points in the opposite direction.
If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you know that I had no problem with Andy MacPhail’s reluctance last year to spend significant money on short-term free agent gap fillers. The Orioles weren’t close to competing and there was no reason to waste resources on players who wouldn’t be around when they might be ready to accomplish something.
The Orioles still are far from being a playoff contender, but I think the club is at a juncture in MacPhail’s rebuilding program where it’s okay to allocate some real money for players who might help them be more respectable this year. But I mean real money, not Mark Hendrickson money.
I’m all for taking a chance on an injured pitcher like Erik Bedard if the O’s can figure out the right balance of guaranteed money and incentives. If the Orioles have to “waste” $10 million next season in a gamble to add 10 wins and get to a place where somebody in next year’s free agent crop can imagine that he can make the difference, then it would be money well-spent.
Obviously, there are some people in the front office who think a losing season is a losing season, but everybody else knows it’s a lot more complicated than that. If the O’s lose 95 games again in 2010, they will not only continue to alienate a dwindling fan base. They’ll also be burning the prime years of some of their best players without any tangible return.
Don’t you agree?