h/t to Orioles Hangout message boarder paulcoates for this info
According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Orioles and Yankees are “leading the parade of teams who already have interest” in Miami Marlins pitcher Ricky Nolasco.
Nolasco, 30, is 79-71 in eight MLB seasons, all spent with the Marlins. His best year was 2008, when he threw 212.1 innings on his way to a 15-8 record and a 3.52 ERA. In 14 starts in 2013, he’s 3-7 with a 3.80 ERA. He’s allowed 83 hits and 9 HR in 87.2 IP while walking 22 and striking out 72 (1.20 WHIP).
It’s no secret that the Orioles need starting pitching help. While we hope that Jason Hammel can be more consistent, that Miguel Gonzalez continues to perform, that Chris Tillman has really “figured it out” and that Wei-Yin Chen will be the same when he returns from the DL (whenever that may be), the fact is that starting pitching could very well be what holds this team back from winning the AL East for the first time since 1997.
The Birds’ 4.53 ERA is second-to-last in the American League, ahead of only the miserable Houston Astros. While mashing the ball is fun and all, the O’s bats can’t keep being expected to score 5-6 runs every game to have a chance to win. The O’s need better pitching. Expecting that pitching to come in the form of all the above “hopes” working out doesn’t seem like the most prudent course of action.
But is Ricky Nolasco really the guy to push the O’s over the top? He’s certainly not the type of top-of-the-rotation starter that the Birds so desperately need, but it’s not like those guys are growing on trees, or will be readily available for anything less than an arm and a leg (or a Bundy and a Schoop) at the trade deadline.
Nolasco, at best, would add another #3-type starter to a rotation already stocked with them.
So what do you think? Would you like the O’s to go after Nolasco? What would you be willing to give up? How about a guy like Matt Garza or Cliff Lee? What would you have the team give up for them?