Walker For Matos Swap In The Works

As has been rumored for a couple of days now, the Cubs and Orioles are close to swapping Todd Walker and Luis MatosAccording to the Baltimore Sun, the salary difference is the only holdup. 

While the Orioles’ purpose for acquiring Walker is reportedly for use as a DH or bat off the bench, a source of mine says that is not the whole story.  According to the source, Brian Roberts is not where everyone thinks he is health-wise.  He’s been mentioned as perhaps being ready for Opening Day, but that is highly unlikely.  His type of elbow surgery is "largely unknown" according to Will Carroll.

Matos hasn’t been used in right field since 2003.  He’s a right-handed hitter who has batted .236/.302/.353 vs. left-handers over the last three seasons.  In other words, not the ideal platoon partner for Jacque Jones.  I’m guessing the Cubs would carry he and Marquis Grissom as backup outfielders and attempt to find at-bats for Matos in left field.

The Cubs and Orioles have an amicable relationship, having worked out deals for Corey Patterson and Sammy Sosa in the recent past.  In addition, the teams have talked extensively about Miguel Tejada.

A .290 Spring Training batting average has the Orioles thinking Patterson will make a capable regular for them in center field.  While it’s worth a shot, Patterson should again have a hard time topping a .310 OBP.

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