Orioles owner Peter Angelos seldom weighs in on the status of the team these days. Sunday afternoon's rumor that the Blue Jays CEO position would be opening up and that there was some reported interest from O's GM Dan Duquette was enough to get Angelos to comment. His comment, as told to MASN's Roch Kubatko, was simple: "We're not relinquishing him, period."
That is a straightforward response, although it could be seen to be more as staking a bargaining position rather than an ironclad statement. Duquette is under contract with the Orioles through the 2018 season. Leaving four years early even to take such a promotion is not something that can be done without the Orioles' permission. That doesn't mean he's not going to leave, but it probably means he won't be leaving for nothing.
Angelos also spoke to the Baltimore Sun, telling Dan Connolly: "We don't want (Duquette) to go away, and we don't expect him to go away. And he's given no indication he wants to go away." That Angelos hasn't heard from Duquette about this subject could mean the rumors are all overblown or that something really weird and possibly terrible is on the way.
Someone knows what's going on, but that someone's probably not talking to reporters about it.
In a funny bit of timing, the earlier reports about the Jays CEO position came out of the national baseball media even while the Orioles reporter contingent was on a flight to San Diego with Duquette. The O's GM is not expected to address a large media contingent until Monday.
Jim Duquette, who might have some inkling of how Dan feels about Baltimore, told MASN's Steve Melewski that Dan is not unhappy with things in Baltimore. "He loves it there," said Jim Duquette. "He's settled his family there, has a house there and loves the Orioles."
The O's beat writer contingent stood around a table while Dan Duquette went on to talk to Jim Bowden and Jim Duquette on SiriusXM. Journalism gets pretty weird sometimes. This interview was previously lined up. He addressed the Jays rumor briefly before moving on to other topics, namely what he hopes to do to improve the Orioles this week.
"I do have a contract and I always honor my contract," said Duquette on the show. He also said that "we have a good thing going in Baltimore. I enjoy working with Buck." These are all warm, empty phrases, which is probably better than cold, empty phrases, but not any more meaningful.
Maybe it will all turn out to be a whole lot of nothing. It's still more of a distraction than you'd like for the Orioles to have heading into a crucial week of league meetings.