Yes, the Orioles’ season is almost over and at this point, we’re all frustrated as fans. This was supposed to be another season the Orioles won the AL East and made it back into the playoffs. However, things fell apart for the 2015 team and it was a lackluster squad.
Now the team faces a tough offseason with many impending free agents and a crisis within management in the organization.
Here’s what a perfect offseason for Baltimore would be, in my mind:
Part ways with Dan Duquette.
Enough is enough with the Duquette situation. It’s clear that he wished to pursue the Toronto position last offseason and that he was done with his time in Baltimore. However, Peter Angelos refused to let him off his contract without compensation from Toronto (which I don’t blame him for) and he came up with a flat offseason for Baltimore.
His heart is clearly not into fixing the Orioles’ issues, while Buck Showalter is still passionate about the team. It’s time to let Duquette off the hook and bring in someone that is willing to help keep some of the impending free agents. This new general manager also needs to bring in some new talent off of the free agent market.
Re-sign Davis and O’Day
There’s going to be a lot of players that walk this offseason, which is fine in certain spots. Brian Matusz, Matt Wieters, Wei Yin-Chen and Steve Pearce have all had their bright moments as Orioles but it’s tough to believe that any of them will be back. Expect all four of these players to move on to other teams, but it’s important that the Orioles keep Chris Davis and Darren O’Day.
Will the team have to overpay Davis to stay here? Absolutely. Can you replace a player in a lineup that hits over 40 home runs? Not at all. The Orioles have learned their lesson with Nelson Cruz leaving last offseason and the team can’t afford to lose another power hitter of that caliber. It’s time to give Davis the money he wants in order to keep him in the middle of the lineup for years to come.
O’Day is also someone that needs to get paid in order to stay in Baltimore and I think he’s worth every penny. He’s been one of the top set-up men in baseball the last few years and is also great insurance if Britton falters or even gets moved into the rotation. Pay O’Day to stay! (I’m trademarking that)
Chen’s departure leaves a hole in the rotation and the Orioles are going to want to have another veteran take his place instead of filling it internally.
Doug Fister would be an interesting and moderately cheap option, after he was moved to the Nationals’ bullpen. Fister has good career numbers, despite his down-season, and he could be a nice bounce-back candidate if the Orioles take a shot at him.
Iwakuma is just a pitcher I’d like the Orioles to look at because of how consistent he’s pitched for the Mariners. He’s struggled through some injuries but has a career-3.19 ERA. It’s tough to gauge what kind of offers he’d receive on the market at 34-years-old but the Orioles should take the chance if the price is right.
Sign Jason Heyward (Please)
Heyward hasn’t exactly lived up to his hype as a prospect and has struggled with lack of power. However, he’s batting .289 with the Cardinals this season and is just 26-years-old. He’s also a two-time Gold Glove winner and could provide an immediate upgrade in a depleted Orioles’ outfield.
Heyward will cost a decent amount of money and the Orioles should shell it out to him. He has the ability to hit well in the middle of the lineup and will have fans much less frustrated with players in the outfield. Bring in Heyward.
Agree/Disagree? Tell us about your ideal offseason in the comments…