CCC: Bargain Hunting


As of now, the Orioles cannot be sucessful with our current approach. While I'm probably stating the obvious, signing "Mentors" has not been working at all. The best way for this team to get back into contention is bargain hunting- searching for players that, for some reason, are not wanted in their current organization, or have not been garnering intrest on the market and getting them for cheap. The first example that comes to mind is Colby Rasmus- an exciting young outfielder that had clashed with the team and was traded. Although his season wasn't the greatest, it is these types of players I propose we try and get. (Hopefully excluding attitude problems). Youth, OBP, and power is to be emphasized. I would also like to sign several foreign players this offseason, hopefully with our new GM's connections. And of course, a lot of our young guys need to be given chances. As stated, youth is key. I honesty don't believe that the Orioles can contend, or even come close to contending, in 2012, but with the right approach, and hopefully Machado, Schoop, and one or both of the Bundys, contention in 2013 doesn't seem out of the question.

The Stratagy-Hitting:

The first move is simply releasing Luke Scott. Old, hurt, and a liability on the field, he has no place in the next few years. Jo-Jo Reyes should be gotten rid of as well. I have no faith in Brian Roberts ever returning to form, and I as much as I love Robert Andino, I feel that at most he is a capable utility player. Ryan Adams should start at second, but if he falters even a little, Matt Antonelli should be given a chance to start too. A guy I am very interested in is Logan Morrison. Only 23, powerful, and has had issues with the Marlins staff before. He might be difficult to get, but I feel like a package involving Nolan Reimold, Chris Tillman, and if necessary, a competant AA player like Oliver Drake would be enough to reel him in. Adam Jones has been a quality player for the last few years, but his plate disicpline is terrible, and I don't see any power boosts coming soon. Trade him at the winter meetings to the Nationals. The Nats are absoultly desperate for a center fielder, offering Drew Storen for Denard Span, and seriously considered offering Steve Lombardozi as well. Jones is younger and more proven, so I would expect the Nationals to accept Jones in exchange for the two. Storen can be that young, cheap closer we need, and Lombardozi has intruiging ability as a speedy second baseman with some pop. He's only 23, and slashed 309/360/430 with 42 XBH and 30 steals over only 134 games. To fill the gap, I would be an advocate of signing Yoenis Cespedes. I do buy into the hype, and it is possible to sign an extremely team friendly contract for such a talent- 11 million a year for 6 years should be plenty to sign him. It's a risk the Orioles need to take. Nick Markakis is fine in right. Chris Davis has never really gotten a chance to shine after destroying Triple A, so I'm excited to see what he can do at third. Mark Reynolds can keep mashing, and wouldn't be a total liability defensivly at DH. He can also fill in at firstand third from time to time. Casey Kotchman will be signed for 2 years, 17 million. This is extremly genourous for a player with one good season, yet that season was excellent, where he batted 306/378/422. He can play first, as he is much better defensivly then Reynolds. I'm not even going to mention moving JJ Hardy or Matt Wieters. Taylor Teagarden, Matt Angle, and Antonelli round out the bench. Kyle Hudson(Speed plus OBP) starts in center. I realize he's not starter material, but I don't expect to contend this year. Cespedes starts the year in Double A, and hopefully will be up by late May

The Strategy-Pitching:

The pitching core would improve dramatically if the young arms took a step back in the right direction. I am in favor of Jim Johnson becoming a starter- besides, if he's bad, he can be slotted back into the bullpen. Zach Britton and Jake Arrieta should be given spots. Brian Matuz needs to get back on track in the minors for a month, so Tommy Hunter can take over as the number 5 until he's ready to come back. The problem is our lack of anything resembling a number 1 starter. Jeremy Guthrie should be traded for prospects. Lars Anderson of the Red Sox is a promising choice. He was almost dealt for Rich Harden last trade deadline, but the deal fell though, so a Guthrie for Anderson swap is likely. Anderson is only 23, yet rated the 9th best first base prospect last preseason. Once Reynolds leaves, Anderson can step into the first base role. To fix the ace problem, CJ Wilson will be signed, at 5 years, 100 million. He may be 31, but he only just turned 31 two weeks ago, and his arm is relatively fresh due to the fact he was a reliever until recently. In the bullpen, Kevin Gregg remains. For our set-up man, Pedro Strop will be handed the ball. He handled himslef extremley well last year. Darren O'Day is our seventh-inning man, with the possibilty of the set up if Strop falters. Our closer is of course Drew Storen. Rounding out the bullpen is Clay Rapada, Jason Berken, and Alfredo Simon.


I'm sure you think that this is all going to be very expensive. However, shockingly, the total for 2012 is roughly 96 million. The reason I was able to sign free agents is bargain hunting. The opening line-up would look like this-

1. JJ Hardy

2. Nick Markakis

3. Logan Morrison

4. Mark Reynolds

5. Casey Kotchman

6. Matt Wieters

7. Chris Davis

8. Ryan Adams

9. Kyle Hudson

SP1: CJ Wilson

SP2: Zach Britton

SP3: Jake Arrietta

SP4: Jim Johnson

SP5: Tommy Hunter

CL: Drew Storen

SEU: Pedro Strop

LM: Alfredo Simon

SIT1: Jason Berken

SIT2: Kevin Gregg

LOOGY: Clay Rapada

BC: Taylor Teagarden

B2B/SS: Robert Andino

B3B: Matt Antonelli

BOF: Matt Angle

Of these 25 players, 14 make below 1 million dollars. And yet this is still a formidable team. If this were to happen, the Orioles wouldn't be embarassing in 2012, and could contend starting in 2013.

EDIT: Checked stats, Kotchman is a better defender the Reynolds. Moved Kotchman into primary first base spot.

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