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January 23, 2010

Tejada: It's done

Jeff Zrebiec just confirmed with Orioles sources that Miguel Tejada has agreed to terms on a one-year deal, pending a physical. That means that he'll start at third base for the Orioles and Garrett Atkins will be the starter at first base. Atkins seemed pretty sure of his role with the O's when he got here today, which should have been a clue.

Obviously, Orioles fans have some mixed feelings about Tejada from his first go-round with the club, but no one can deny that he injects a significant amount of offensive potential into the Orioles batting order.

There are some fair questions to ponder about his ability to play third base at a high level, but that's what spring training is for.

This must be a special occasion. Adam Jones just arrived in a tux.

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 11:11 AM | | Comments (71)
Categories: Just baseball
        

Comments

Questions to ponder... his ability to play 3rd at a high level is definitely one of them.

How about why his batting / power numbers have taken a nose-dive starting about mid-June each of the last two season? That's a good question to ask people...

I have mixed feelings about Tejada because i'm hoping that he doesnt turn into what Melvin Mora was last year but overall I am happier with him than Crede. Im surprised he took the one year deal but I think this is a good look for the O's even though it kind of still looks like Mora at 3rd and Huff at 1st.

Oh joy. How long before he starts showing up late, and using Cesar Izturis as his interpreter to request a trade?

What's the over/under on his GIDP this year?

Tejada "injects ... offensive potential." You should conact the makers of Winstrol and see if you can get a marketing deal.

Can't say I'm thrilled but it's a huge upgrade over Mora and whatever Joe Crede might've brought so in that regard I like the move. I worry about Miggy's defense though.

Tejada is better than Eric's comments. Eric is upset, because he is not in the Majors.

I like the move, now get Erik Bedard.

Tejada is an aging ball player with very good offensive numbers. Last year his average was over 300 and he hit nearly 50 doubles. Yes, his homer numbers were down to around 15. He will be a very nice offensive addition. Can he field the plays at third, why not. I think he'll do okay for now. But, what does it matter? At the most he'll only be a starter for half of the season. He will not jeopardize Josh Bell's jump to the Orioles, so relax and take a deep breath. I have bigger concerns with him mingling around the youngsters. He is a head case and there is no denying it. The manager will need to keep tight reigns on him.

Peter-

Very happy about this. And it isn't that Miggy is the guy he was 8 years ago.
Abviously, he can still hit for average.
The power is down.

But...compared to JOE CREDE it is a really bright sign that the O's would dole out the extra money to get the better player.

As far as the switch to 3rd. SS have done it a million times. The angle is different, but the glove work is the same. Miggy has great ability, but LIMITED RANGE. I think you are going to see that he should have switched to 3b a long long time ago.

Go O's.

Eric, hey dude lighten up. It's a one year deal. And, if your doom and gloom slump scenario materializes Bell might be ready to step in after the all star break anyway and then Tejada and Izturis can fight over SS. I know Tejada's range there is limited but come on guy, can't you see anything positive from Tejada instead of brokeback Crede?

If Tejada can bat around .300 with 40+ doubles, 15+ HR's, and 80+ RBI's, he is a steal this late in the game. I think he will be able to make the transition to 3B smoothly. I love the move. The only question I would have is where do you put him in the batting order? I would think the 2 hole.

Great ! I'm all for it ! ..... seriously ! Bedard next ?

Great. Who can quibble with a guy who hit .3l3 with 15 hrs and played almost every inning of every game.

Bedard is on the way too, pending approval of his physical results.

I have always felt that needy egomaniacs never fit in with the Orioles' make-up and in fact are a detriment to the ever-so-important team cohesion and focus. I agree with Leon that Tejada is a head-case. My hope is that his acceptance of a 1 year may indicate a dash of humility. As we know, performance trumps any and all concerns, and as I hope for the best from Tejada, I just don't need any drama or distraction other than the drama of timely hitting and consistent fielding.

Hope Trembley expects all out hustle, class on the field and off the field. I feel his right handed bat will be a good fit in this lineup.

Peter,

In your opinion, do you think the O's might now consider dropping Andino and making Tejada the back-up SS as well? With guys like Atkins, Wiggington and Scott around 1B and 3B should be well covered as far as reserves go.

Barring any trades, Pie, Wiggington and back-up Catcher are locks for the bench. Perhaps now they might consider guys like Turner and/or Montanez for bench spots over Andino?


yes, get Erik back! He has matured quite a bit and I think he really does like it here in Baltimore. He will be such a good mentor for Bergenson and the other young arms.
Concerning Miggy, welll gosh- I just hope he keeps his trap shut!

I'm not worried about Miggy's ability to play third base. He's still got the reflexes, the agility and the arm. All he's missing is the range needed to play short.

I'll take it, as long as Mr. "Let's ground into two!" doesn't hit higher than 5th.

PS - Can't wait until wayne gets back from FanFest. His posts should be highly entertaining.

I'll guess that he didn't get to ask a question, so he'll come here ranting about how the Warehousers spotted him and were too afraid to give him the mike.

Any idea if/when we could start to expect anything with Bedard?

I love the move. Tejada is still an excellent hitter. Even if he doesn't hit a ton of home runs, he is still a major upgrade over Melvin Mora. Now, if the O's can get Bedard back, it will solidify quite an off-season. Also, it would be pretty cool to get the same two guys back even though we got 10 players for them two years ago.

Keep it up Andy!

eric -

miggy's OPS in September was .936 last year. his 2nd best month (not including OCT, which was even higher). not too sure about your theory.

So we trade Miggy...get prospects and then HIM back.

We're going to get Bedard back too.

With what's Out there -- these make serious sense.

Now - who's going to hit the home runs?

I guess the Orioles are not too confident about Josh Bell's chances of being ready by the all-star break. I see a BIG problem if Bell is brought up and starting over Tejada. Miggy is not the type to accept a bench or DH role and I don't see him moving to any other positions. I am not too excited about the move, but Tejada was the best right handed hitter available.

This is good news to me if for no other reason than it could have been somebody worse.This was just a case of waiting on someone who would take a one year deal. We should be a lot better against lefty starters now. Last year there was like a month where we saw nothing but lefties.

The one thing I never did like about Miggy wa s he didn't hit in late inning clutch situations but he's a respected bat and could help the hitters in front or back of him. right now we only have one hole in the line up.

What happened to no Saturday surprise from AM. I guess because there is no official announcement until after the physical there is no surprise, although somebody in or close to the O's organization must have leaked word.

I would love to see Bedard too...then when Bell is ready and Arrieta arrives...we could flip both of them again at the deadline in 2010 for even more prospects...
trade the same two guys twice for two hauls...this is the way to restock the system...go Andy...

Eric's glass is always half empty, not full! Last year, Crede batted .225. Belanger's career ave. was .229!

Who said you can't have your cake and eat it, too. If we sign Bedard, we would have the two players we traded for the 10 players two years ago. Of course, only Jones, Sherrill and Scott have been assets so far, but Patton was supposed to be the centerpiece of the Houston trade, so we'll see what he can do if he gets completely recovered from the surgery. And people, PLEASE don't remind me that Albers and Sarfate "pitched" for the Orioles. I wouldn't call what they did pitching.

Brad -

If Bell's ready by the ASB and he comes up and performs, then they can just trade Miggy again. If Miggy's hitting close to .300 with a bunch of doubles, trading him shouldn't be too difficult.

As I said before, I like this move, but there are still a handful of players I'd like to see with the O's, in no particular order...

Ryan Garko - No one seems interested. See if he'll accept a minor league deal with an invite to camp. If he performs, he makes Scott or Atkins expendable.

Johnny Damon - No interest here either. Probably because his asking price is still too high. If he comes down to $7-8M, bring him in to DH and bat in the #2 hole.

Erik Bedard - He'll be a nice reinforcement at the ASB if one of the kids is really struggling. If they're all doing fine, he could make Guthrie or Millwood trade bait.

Jon Garland - Another innings eater with a history of success in an AL hitters park (Chicago). Bring him into camp to push the young guys. If everyone performs, what's wrong with leaving camp with six starting pitchers?

John Smoltz - I wouldn't expect him to play for a non-contender, as he's probably only hanging around for another shot at a ring. But if he has no other serious options, bring him in as a reliever/spot starter.

Noah Lowry - If he's willing to start the season at AAA to reestablish himself, bring him in.

Kevin Gregg, Kiko Calero, Seth McClung, Chan Ho Park, Joe Beimel - Nothing wrong with another solid arm in the pen.

good move. and no, please don't bat him 2nd. GIDP was such an issue when last he wore a Baltimore uniform.

batting him 9th maybe...

No problem with Bell coming up. This is better, cause Tejada can move to short which will increase the offense potential. Izturis will still play especially as a defensive replacement in the later innings.

I like Miggy a lot and am glad to see him back. Let's not forget that a lot of his depression before he left was because he didn't get along with Sammy Sosa. I do not blame Miggy for that -- Sosa's a jerk. Peter, if I have that wrong, please correct me.

I was popped here from another site without knowing where I was being sent. I was upset to find myself here, as I have avoided your blog because of the inclusion in this blog of your reactionary politics. I was pleased to find no politics in your blog today.

not brooks,

no love for Chan Ming Wang?

agree with your collection of Free Agents and their prospective roles...all make sense. particularly like Kevin Gregg. Never hurts having more than one closer option.

I've done some complaining lately, so I just want to give the O's some credit. I think that this move along with the earilier ones, makes the off-season look so much better to me now.I know Miggy is not the ball player he once was but he still a good hitter and is the best option right know fors the O's. Andy Macphail has improved the ball club. Now lets go get Bedard.

i would rather have seen the orioles go without tejada.. peter missed your fact & opinion last week and this week.

The Tejeda deal means an excess of corner infielders. So I guess there could be more wheelings and dealings by MacPhail up until and maybe during Spring Training.

The Os were lucky that Tejada was still available. .313 BA ,over 100 HR,459 RBI in 4 years with the Os.He is one of the greatest players to ever wear the black and orange.For once,MacPhail made a good move.Welcome back,Miggy

I am unhappy with bringing Tejada back. He actively campaigned to leave the Orioles when he was here and may have deliberately field his position poorly to make it happen. Also, it means we can not expect someone from the minors to be given a try at third. If he hits well maybe we can get some rookies at the trading deadline. Hope he does not undermine the morale like he can do.

Hey Pete, do you think this is our starting lineup?

Roberts
Markakis
Tejada
Scott
Jones
Reimold
Weiters
Atkins
Izturis

All we need is to get Bedard back to make the trades complete from 2 years ago. Andy will have looked like a genius if this all works out. Does bringing these guys back count as building from within since they used to be within?

NB- I'll take Biemel and Calero out of that list.

Biemel is my dark horse for AM's LH RP. or maybe he was referencing Bedard?

I'm cool with this. GIDPs or not, Tejada is an impact player who is proven in the AL East. The starting lineup just got a serious jolt of energy (and I'm not talking about HGH).

Sure, the old GIDP in a big situation will frustrate me about 30 times this season, but someone had to take the place of Huff and Mora, right?

I wonder how this lineup will shake out, 1-9?

Thanks for the updates, Pete, and for the forum.

NB- apparently Garland is an SOB and nobody gets along with him.

I love this move, over the last 8 years tejada's average hasn't gone below .278 and he is a great fielder. I can't wait to see him and B-Rob do their hand shake a few more times. One more move to make, Erik Bedard

excellent, now get a couple of arms in here, and you've got a major league roster, and the young players correctly slotted in the minors. And it'll be a nice offseason.

Say it ain't so! I liar (age) and a juicer! It's one thing when he was already on our roster but to go get him again after he fought to leave the last time. Just goes to show us all how bad we really are at this point when this is best AM can do! Now we get a guy who hasn't played the position is probably closer to 40 than 35 with diminishing numbers and playing for his last and only paycheck! I mean it's one thing to take a chance on Atkins bouncing back, so why weren't we in on Laroach, a much younger and proven player without all the baggage. This move alone is horrible for PR and in fact may force me to give up a lifetime of support for a once pround and successful organization. From where I sit, it just doesn't get any worse, even Melvin Mora was a better option!

i'm not sure the sense of bringing in someone who has never played 3rd base before. it took mora and ripken about 90-100 games to get comfortable after moving from other positions. maybe by 100 games bell will be ready to move up from norfolk. to me it would have made sense to get someone with experience at the position.

What concerns me is his BB/SO ratio. Last year had a .340 OBP to the tune of a .314 BA. Not good. Hopefully OPACY can help that.

I officially hate the Orioles. Bringing back a malcontent steroid abuser is not just bad pr but bad business. Angelos please sell the team to someone who knows how to run a professional sports team. I think Mr. Bisciotti fits the bill.

You're welcome everyone!

Whadda ya mean? You don't think I helped to convince them NOT to sign Crede?

Tejada may be waaaaaay past his prime, but he's Tex compared to Crede.

Now the O's have possibly the 4th or 5th worst corners in their history. At least they won't be the worst.

Still the worst team in the AM, but at least they don't have Crede....

@Brian Shea

NFL rosters are nearly 100% steroid abusing malcontents. You should be happy!

I definetly didn't want to see Crede signed and I was hesitant about signing Tejada because I thought he would want more years. But, by him signing a 1 year deal tells me he is well aware of the Bell situation and the fact that he'll probably be up mid-season and take over the 3B spot leaving him as a back-up to 3B and SS as well as time as DH. If he wasn't ok with that I doubt he would have signed a 1 year deal. With that said, I like the signing. The only problem I have is we still never got a true clean-up hitter with any of our signings this off season.

Whew! Another gap that was stopped.

I love it, with a little luck from the kids we may finally make it to .500 with a future!

But will Tejada be reunited with his steroids?

Oh my god this is insane… 2 corner infielders playing out of position… awesome….

If we get Erik Bedard as well, we would have traded two players and then signed them back to the team. We received in the trades Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, Luke Scott, Matt Albers, Dennis Sarfate and gave up nothing in return. George Sherrill was also in the Bedard trade, so we also received Josh Bell.

Okay okay okay if Miggy is coming back why don’t they just bring back Mora and ditch Wiggy? I thought Mora and Miggy were tight and could play well together and improve the defense. We don’t know how good Miggy is going to be at 3rd…

HAHAHAH! With all the players out of position on the Orioles we might as well have Kakes pitch out of the pen, Jones play catcher and have our reliever M-Gon bat cleanup and we pretend he is A-Gon

Ryan and John -

Atkins was originally a first baseman, but moved to third with the Rockies because of a guy named Todd Helton. Atkins has played over 100 games at first base in his big league career, with over 70 starts there in the past two seasons.

So that leaves us with one player out of position, and the only reason Miggy isn't fit to play short anymore is because he doesn't have the range to continue at the position. Moving from short to third is one of the most natural position changes in the game, and since Tejada still has nice reflexes and a good arm, I doubt he'll have much of a problem with the switch.

Starting Line=Up:

Roberts
Jones
Markakis
Tejada
Scott
Reimold
Weiters
Atkins
Izturis

Pie, Wigginton, Aldino, Moeller

John,

Atkins position in college and the minors was first base. He was blocked at first with the Rockies by Todd Helton so he moved to third. Last year after he lost his starting job at third he backed up at both first and third.

Roberts
Markakis
Jones
Wieters
Atkins
Scott
Miggy
Reimold/Pié
Izturis

I think Trembley will give the kid a shot at cleanup. Unless Atkins wows him in spring training, the switch hitting power to all fields from both sides of the plate that Wieters provides should have Captain Kirk at warp speed leaving Sarasota. Will he still alternate Adam & Nick for the righty/lefty matchups?

I'm a loyal fan first and I hope Miggy's return energizes the team this time as much as he tried to initially during his first tour.

We'll know better by mid-season when Josh Bell is ripping up 3A offensively and the O's are on the verge of calling him up to the majors.

These things always seem to work themselves out by injury or poor performance and I don't see Miggy's skills as falling as quickly as Mora's offensive skills did in his last season with the team.

I could envision Reimold moving up rather quickly if Atkins continues to struggle as he did last year. I don't see Miggy as a top of the lineup guy anymore. He hit 5th or 6th in Houson right? He could do some real damage from the bottom third anyway, and the bottom third has been what has separated us from the big boys in our division for about a decade now, offensively at least.

Cal said that Cal Sr. always taught that it takes at least 100 games to feel comfortable at a new position even if you can play that position. So, Miggy might not be playing 3rd at a 'high level' until August or thereabouts. Be patient with Miggy defensively and hope any problem adapting to 3rd doesn't have an effect on his hitting. Maybe that's why McPhail wants Atkins at 1st and not at 3rd? Ya think, maybe? I'll bet he's counting on Atkins stroke to return playing his preferred position rather than having to work every day at mastering 3rd.

Tejada will say all the right things when he arrives in spring training. He'll say how happy he is to be back in Baltimore. What will his attitude be like by the end of May when we are on pace to win 70 games. Will he run out a 6-4-3- double play ball in August when we are 30 games out of first and there are 30,000 people disguised as empty seats?

He'll be complaining by the middle of the summer just like he did during his original stint with the O’s.

Hopefully he will play well enough so we can trade him at the trade deadline, even though we wouldn’t get anything for him.

Good lord, the minions are out in force. From mid-June through October his power numbers have been mediocre at best the last two years. He's a year older. He's not going to get better. He's not going to get younger. Chances are, based on DECADES of trends, that he'll decline. The disappointment here is that he's just another in a long line of aging, past prime stop-gaps. But we're supposed to be excited... It's such a shame.

Peter, nice chatting with you today at Fan Fest.

Miggy for 1 year is a great move.....if the Kiddie Korp on the hill come through, these are exciting times in Birdland!

Getting Tejada isnt going to improve the Orioles. He is simply collecting a paycheck. Also the timing of the whole thing just reeks of typical Orioles PR to over shadow the fact they are raising ticket prices for a team that will struggle to not lose 90 games....again.

Tejada is also a Type A free agent meaning the Orioles will have to give up their number 1 draft pick as compensation for signing Tejada, mortgaging the future for a 1 year stop gap does not sound smart to me.

Canice you are wrong, Tejada is not a Type A free agent this offseason. The only type A shortstop was Marco Scutaro. The O's lose no draft picks from this signing.

The reason he is not type A/B I imagine is because the Astros declined to offer him arbitration.

Pete, It's amazing the amount of misinformation and misunderstand manifest here by the Miggy-bashers. From accusations of egomania to rants about his hitting into double plays, much that is off the mark.

The fact that he knows he's a good player doesn't make him an egomaniac (not that that has much to do with what he does on the field anyway) anymore than his passionate desire to win games. I don't know about you, but if I'm putting a team together, I want players who are serious about winning. Miggy fits that description to a tee.

Well, what about him hitting into double plays? Guilty as charged. However (and this is a huge "however," one that effectively nullifies the GIDP rap), he also had the best AB per KO ratio in the National League, striking out only 48 time in 635 at bats, while second in the league with 199 hits and eighth with a .313 batting average.

In other words, he makes contact far more often than not, which is exactly what the Orioles were looking for in a right-handed bat to protect Nick Markakis. True, one would like more power from the clean up hitter (yeah, I know the lineup hasn't been finalized, but Tejada's almost certainly going to be the guy as he's the most dependable when it comes to making contact), but it's quite possible that he hits 20 to 25 homers in the more hitter-friendly confines of Camden Yards.

This was a shrewd move by Andy MacPhail and one that could pay big dividends if Tejada comes through with yet another All Star caliber season. I predict that if he stays healthy, Miggy's going to put Josh Bell on hold and win over nearly all O's fans (the few narrow-minded, "hate Miggy regardless" ones are beyond hope, so as to not even count).

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About Peter Schmuck
Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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