Lost in the translation
Andy MacPhail displayed a knack for international diplomacy when some Japanese reporters cornered him after the Millwood press conference last night and peppered him with questions about free agent Hideki Matsui and also Orioles pitcher Koji Uehara.
They wanted to know if there was any possibility of the O's signing Matsui to fill the run-production gap in the middle of the batting order, which was a fair question after manager Dave Trembley spoke highly of Matsui during the annual Managers Luncheon earlier in the day.
“I don’t think there’s any question he is still a very productive hitter,’’ MacPhail said. “It’s always a possibility. We’re definitely going to look for a middle of the order bat. We’re concentrating right now on corner infielders, but we can always use a good hitter.”
If it sounds like he is really open to the idea, I wouldn't get too excited about that possibility. I’m pretty sure MacPhail was just being polite.
He also would not entirely rule out Uehara as a member of the starting rotation, though it's pretty clear that the club is leaning toward using him in a bullpen role. Uehara's role, he said, will be determined based on what the club feels will allow him to stay healthy all season. I think that's already fairly obvious.