You know, the more I think about it, the more I'm conflicted, but not for the obvious reasons. The Orioles could trade Tejada, and I would live. It would probably include Manny Ramirez. However, Manny wouldn't be coming here. I'm getting the feeling this will be a big kegger of a bash of a trade if anything does go down. The problem is, there's no market value for Manny and Miggy that isn't Manny and Miggy.
And while trading Tejada wouldn't end my life or fandom or anything, I do not trust Peter Angelos, Jim Duquette and Mike Flanagan to not screw it up.
I'm envisioning a three-team deal that ends up something like this:
LAA gets: LF Manny Ramirez
BOS gets: SS Miguel Tejada
BAL gets: 1B/OF Darin Erstad, CF Steve Finley, IF Dustin Pedroia, P Craig Hansen
I'd be happy to take in Pedroia and Hansen, but that wouldn't make that a better trade. And it's the kind of crap I've come to expect from the Orioles front office. If we get Erstad in any deal, I'll puke. I refuse to root for him unless he starts hitting .340 with power again and does it for my team.
So the problem with trading Tejada lies in the fact that there just aren't many acceptable deals out there. Manny Ramirez, however it happens, is probably the guy that would trigger it. The Orioles could ask for nothing but prospects, but instead they'd probably screw around with Erstad or Finley, which as merdon mentioned in a diary, have been two guys the O's have been in talks about regarding Javy Lopez.
The Tejada situation stinks from all sides. Angelos' comments have been both silly and, if you really think about it, laughable. This was a guy that two offseasons ago spent money to bring in Tejada, Javy, Palmeiro and Ponson, and NOW he doesn't want to spend money on the free agent market? I can see his point about Burnett and Ryan, and I wouldn't have given them those deals either, but there are other guys out there. We lost out on Paul Byrd and refuse to explore cheap, interesting options like Frank Thomas or Erubiel Durazo, both of which are additions I'd fully support. The creativity just isn't there. Two years ago, they tossed cash at four guys, plus some guys they missed out on. Last year they did nothing until they traded for Sosa in January. And yeah, you can't do anymore than make an offer, as was the case with Vlad Guerrero or Konerko, but if you don't have anything resembling a sound backup plan, why are you hedging your bets on the best players all coming to your team that finished .500 four managers ago?
I'm mostly just frustrated and annoyed by the whole thing. I'm jumping to the conclusion that Tejada probably feels like this isn't what he signed on for, and he's probably got a legitimate gripe there. Angelos signed two marquee free agents (Tejada and Lopez) and two other guys (Palmeiro and Ponson) that were expected to contribute, and has really done nothing since besides add a 36-year old outfielder that was on a steady and obvious four-year decline before he got here, and had been more or less run out of a town that once loved him for being a bum and a jerk. Tejada probably expected that he was the start of something. Instead he was the start and end of it.
Miguel Tejada is acting like a bit of a baby, but Angelos is doing his talking out of his ass routine. If he doesn't want to spend money this year, fine. We were basically promised a contender in 2006, and we won't get it. So what's the plan, guys? Nothing? Sit on your hands and fart around until it's time to fire Sam Perlozzo? There is the makings of a future in our farm system, yes, but the Orioles have become a desperate joke of a franchise under Angelos' watch ever since the day the 1997 ALCS was lost.
Maybe Angelos needs to go, but maybe Tejada does too. Maybe the idea of starting from ground zero should start at the very top. All I know is that the New Year can't get here quickly enough for the Orioles so we can stop talking about what a terrible year it's been. And to think that in May, we were all jumping around because this team was full of fire and kicking ass.