Odds & Ends: Orioles, V-Mart, Buck, Nationals

We at MLBTR send our best wishes to Ernie Tyler, the Orioles' 86-year-old umpires attendant who has worked every Opening Day in Baltimore for the last 51 years.  Tyler underwent brain surgery earlier this week to remove a benign tumor, and The Baltimore Sun's Dan Connolly reports that Tyler is progressing well in the early stages of his recovery.  We look forward to seeing Tyler at Camden Yards in April to extend his streak to 52 years.

Let's check out some news items from around the majors…

  • Speaking of Dan Connolly, he thinks Baltimore "will go hard after Victor Martinez and/or Derrek Lee," with Lee being the likelier candidate to sign with the Orioles.
  • ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes thinks the possibility of Martinez re-signing with the Red Sox "looks iffy at best," though three other ESPNBoston contributors predict the free agent will return to the Sox. 
  • Edes also notes that another free agent catcher, John Buck, has a big supporter in Boston assistant GM Allard Baird.
  • If the Nationals don't re-sign Adam Dunn, MLB.com's Bill Ladson writes that Carlos Pena "is at the top of their list" of potential replacements.  Ladson also notes that Washington will "go after [James Loney] hard" if the Dodgers put him on the trade market, and that the Nats could also pursue an outfielder like Jayson Werth and fill their first-base opening from within with Josh Willingham.
  • Arizona assistant general manager Peter Woodfork and the D'Backs have reached a "mutual decision" to part ways, tweets FOXSports.com's Jon Paul Morosi.  It's not an unexpected move since, as Morosi noted in a follow-up tweet, Woodfork has long-term ties to former Arizona GM Josh Byrnes and new D'Backs GM Kevin Towers probably wants to hire his own assistant.
  • Baseball America's Matt Eddy has a recall-filled edition of the week's minor league transactions.
  • With Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and C.C. Sabathia all anchoring the staffs of World Series contenders this postseason, Steve Dilbeck of the L.A. Times bemoans how the Dodgers missed out on acquiring any of the three "true aces" over the last two seasons.
  • Anthony Witrado of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel covered a number of Brewers topics in a chat with readers.

51 Responses to Odds & Ends: Orioles, V-Mart, Buck, Nationals Leave a Reply

  1. Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

    I would love to see James Loney on the Nats. I think that would be a really good fit.

    • basemonkey 5 years ago

      Good call. Loney is a pretty interesting player.

      The Dodgers want him to be a premier type of player, considering the potential and the 1st Rd pick-iness. So far he’s been a disappointment for them, and time is running out for him. If they wait any longer he might lose value if he continues as is, and, may even get released eventually as a roster casualty.

      On another team who would have the room to not place such expectations on him, he might find his stroke. Sometimes big potential left-handed 1B bats just need some time to adjust (e.g. Carlos Pena, David Ortiz, etc..).

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        you are exactly right. I would actually really like to see him on the Orioles or Royals as well, teams with no pressure as you said and can be patient with Loney. I’m really excited to see what happens.

      • mrsjohnmiltonrocks 5 years ago

        Very interesting thoughts. It’s not that he’s been a bad player, he’s been merely good, not great. They expected greatness. I’m with you. A change of scenery, change of expectations, new coaches seeing him for what he is instead of what they hoped he would be, might just help him get the most out of his talent.

        He’s a quiet guy with a great work ethic. The Nats would do well to try to acquire him. I like your thinking here.

        • basemonkey 5 years ago

          Oh, yeah. I didn’t mean to suggest he’s been a “bad” or “mediocre” player. Though speaking strictly in WAR terms, the net result thus far has been below-average “starter” (~1-2 WAR) but, the catch with him ever since he’s reached the bigs is that he’s had the projection to be an All-Star or better (5+ WAR). So the potential has always been huge.

          That said, sometimes I think you need to throw out the hyper-statistical analysis with young players who are still finding their way. I am just making the case that, since his prospect days, he was arguably an untouchable type of player who fans expected to be a 20-30 HR type once the consistently above-average doubles power turned into HRs as his frame filled out. On another team, if he turns into anything from Will Clark-y to John Olerud to Cecil Cooper type of 1B, that would be valued and appreciated. On the Dodgers that would be a disappointment.

      • Guest 5 years ago

        Loney is a completely different hitter on the road. Hes a beast. Hes my favorite player on the Dodgers, i’ll be sad if he goes.

        • lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

          Dont send him to Col or Az, he will forever haunt the Dodgers lol

        • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

          This year he had a .717 OPS at home and a .729 OPS on the road… I take it “beast” is another word for kitten without claws?

          • TapDancingTeddy 5 years ago

            Career Loney’s OPS is .711/.854 on home/away. It could mean he’s not a good player at home; or that he would hit better in another park. No one will know until he plays elsewhere.

          • bleedDODGERblue 5 years ago

            Last year he had like 2 hrs at home, he meant beast

          • Guest 5 years ago

            You’re gonna use his worst season in the bigs? A season where the entire team couldn’t hit?

    • BlueCatuli 5 years ago

      What would it take for a team to pry Loney away?

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        Depends if gets non tendered, if he doesn’t, a lot

  2. I think I may be one of the few Sox fans that’d rather have Buck than V-Mart. God bless V-Mart’s bat and leadership abilities, but the guy couldn’t throw out a double amputee if he was throwing from the pitcher’s mound.

    Buck could give the Sox okay numbers from the 8 hole while doing a much better job at keeping runners on 1st. He could also do all of this at about 1/6 of the cost, thus allowing the Sox to go after Werth or Crawford.

    • Ben_Cherington 5 years ago

      we finally agree! Ive been saying this for sometime now. Buck is a nice player with a decent bat. Vmart will be overpaid and like i said before i feel he is overrated as a catcher. I for one would love Buck!

  3. Slopeboy 5 years ago

    From one Ernie to another- God bless and good luck. Here’s wishing you another 51 years of doing something you obviously enjoy!

  4. start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

    With 3 straight bad years for a first baseman, I can’t understand why people are still excited about Loney. Sure 5 years ago he was a top player on everyone’s hope list… Now he’s simply a player who can’t produce for his position.

    • lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

      Its the idea that if he could somehow correct his swing to be more pull happy, he is Joey Votto. However, the Dodgers dont have the time and patience to wait much longer, and he is getting expensive. And remember, RBIs look really sexy on the trade market…

      • dire straits 5 years ago

        Joey Votto? Come on, man!

        • lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

          what? They have been compared to each other since they were drafted. 1B who are similar skill sets, lefties, Votto just learned to pull the ball, Loney hasnt. I didnt make this up, it just happens that Votto seems to have established himself in the elite class and Loney…. hasnt… so when people bring up that comparison, others freak out

          • Sniderlover 5 years ago

            A lot of Votto’s homeruns were to the opposite field.

            He has established himself as an elite 1st baseman who can hit anywhere.

          • lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

            Most of Loneys hits are to the opposite field. My point is Votto is willing to pull the ball while go the opposite way. Loney likes to go only the opposite way. If loney changes his swing to pull the ball(which would keep his hands inside more and potentially tap into his power), then he has the same potential as Votto. I’ve been saying this for 2 years, so it appears very unlikely to happen
            Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®

        • basemonkey 5 years ago

          Yeah. He just raised the comp because they have trailed each other after being drafted in the same draft. Votto was a 2nd Rounder. Loney was a late 1st Rounder.

      • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

        Yeah, RBIs are sexy and it helps when you bat 4th or 5th for your team. Kinda makes me wonder if the Dodgers had a better hitter in that spot if they would have been more in the race.

        • lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

          We just didn’t have a better hitter after Manny left. Everyone struggled really bad at the end
          Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®

      • Firstly, I think it’s unlikely he’s going to be Votto anytime soon. Even if he does start pulling, I just don’t see the same kind of power. Plus, Votto hasn’t had an OBP less than 0.360 (Career 0.400 OBP). Loney only has two seasons ABOVE 0.360 (0.348 career). So even if he starts hitting for more power, Loney may very well not get on base as much.

        With that said, RBI aren’t just attractive. Loney is good at getting them. He makes good contact and is a pretty good situational hitter. Given this, he could be a pretty useful guy in the 6th spot for a good team that gets guys on and needs to drive them in. But even with that and more power, he won’t be a Votto or a Braun. Sometimes the early prospect reports are just wrong. Not every good young hitter is going to develop fence-clearing power.

        • lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

          Did I say he was? I said that if he began pulling more balls, therefore changing his swing, his natural power COULD come into play. Look, he is as big as Matt Kemp. Kemp has serious power. He has the build but doesn’t have the swing to boot.

          Look, I’m not saying he is automatically gonna become Votto. But he does have that POTENTIAL if he was able to alter his swing. We are only talking potential here…
          Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®

  5. lakersdodgersyankees4life 5 years ago

    So… what do Nats fans think is a good package for Loney? Good contact, pretty swing, lefty, great defense, average speed(maybe below average), still has power potential, but needs to work with a hitting coach to tap that potential.With the other Dodger article linked, What is he talking about!?!?! The pitching was the best in the majors this year in the last few months. We have two aces that are making 500K and 5M, respectively. And he is still bitching about the pitching. God, some ‘journalists’ are morons…

  6. wilson ramos nd jason marquis 4 loney?

  7. are the nats willing to trade clippard? if so, how bout clipard nd ramos 4 loney nd the dodgers should add russell martin 4 free

  8. Yeah, that’s why the Dodgers didn’t do well this year. No ace. It has nothing to do with the lack of offense or bullpen implosions. It’s because they didn’t have a guy to go 7+ every five days.

    • Guest 5 years ago

      Lol.. we scored how many runs in the second half? I think it was under 3 a game. LA media sucks.


  9. Nats won’t trade Ramos. Definitely Flores or maybe Derek Norris, who BA had ranked as their #2 prospect entering the season. They would probably want to Keep Norris and see if his bat plays at first, since Ramos is closer to the bigs and is a much better prospect.

  10. James Loney is to Joey Votto as Sam Bowie is to Michael Jordan.

    The draft has been over for quite awhile. One of them is contending for MVP, the other is a league-average (if not slightly below) 1B.

    • That was meant @lakersdodgersyankees4life

    • basemonkey 5 years ago

      He just raised the comp because they have trailed each other after being drafted in the same draft with similar projections. Votto was a 2nd Rounder. Loney was a late 1st Rounder. For us, prospect nuts, the comparison has been made constantly just to measure progress.

  11. stovin 5 years ago

    Maybe the orioles could offer the Royals Snyder,Pie,Tillman,Egan, and Albers for Greinke and Kila Kaihue. Then resign Patterson to play LF. Sign Inge to play 3B. And sign Takahasi and Benoit to help out the bullpen. Rotation 1: Greinke 2: Matusz 3: Guthrie 4: Bergy 5: Arrieta. Lineup 1: Roberts 2B 2: Markakis RF 3: Jones CF 4: Kila Kaihue 1B 5: Scott DH
    6: Inge 3B 7: Wieters C 8: Patterson LF 9: Andino SS.

    • basemonkey 5 years ago

      When I first saw that offer I thought it’s too much to offer Tillman and then a load of good promising/productive players, but when I saw that you were offering for Greinke, I thought, “Hmmm. Not bad.” According to the Twins, As, Phillies, Jays models of trades for Aces, a top line pitcher commands 2 top prospects/near-MLB-ready players and a piece or two. In your offer Tillman (dominated AAA in two turns, currently adjusting to the majors, and has been flashing great games) and Pie (really nice young player who looks like an above-average ML outfielder with 5 tools) are at or near-MLB ready. Between Egan, Snyder (1st Rounder near ready to jump to bigs), Albers you have a strong set of other pieces who all look like they can contribute to the big league team within a year, if not right now.Anytime you lose a great pitcher like Greinke for high potential guys it’s discouraging. So I wouldn’t expect Royals fans to like this, but it’s a decent offer for him. I think they may want to swap out Snyder, Egan, Albers for a single top prospect though. The quanitity thing in this kind of deal hardly ever works. I think they would probably want Britton, that is, a package of Tillman, Pie, Britton, which would be a very very nice deal for them. The return the Os would get would be a suddenly strong young rotation.

  12. Guest 5 years ago


    • Ironically, someone else said “Ike Davis?” in a post where it didn’t have to do anything with him. WTH does Lincecum(Great Game 1) have to do with anything here?

      • Guest 5 years ago

        The fact that Lincecum went 9 innings, 14 ks, 3 base runners the whole game?

  13. Steve Dilbeck is an idiot. The Dodgers have an ace. His name is Clayton Kershaw. They even had the only rotation in MLB with a WAR over 4: Kershaw, Billingsley and Kuorda.

    Did he even watch a Dodgers game this year? From June on it was the offense that struggled, not the pitching?

    • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      I remember last year holding out on calling Kershaw an ace because his walk rate had a big impact on his inability to get deep into games. But looking at the massive improvement from last year, I’d have to agree… Kershaw has become a true ace.

  14. I guess Clayton Kershaw hasn’t become a true ace. 204 IP, 212 Ks, decreased walk rate, 2.91 ERA, 4 WAR pitcher really doesen’t mean anything these days…(slams head into wall)

  15. stovin 5 years ago

    If the Orioles are going to trade for Greinke we should offer Pie, Brittion and Tillman but if we are going to trade for Gonzo we should offer Pie, Tillman, Albers and Snyder/Egan. If we dont get a true ace which we should then we need to keep Brittion because we will need him. If we get Greinke then we need to sign Dunn. But if we get Gonzo then we need to sign Garland.

  16. woadude 5 years ago

    The Yankees made it very apparent that NOBODY but them was going to have CC Sabathia, what were the Dodgers going to do, offer him 167 million? the Yankees would of said ok 170 million, point is the Yankees FLEW to CC and in the words of Marlon Brando made him an offer he couldnt refuse.

  17. woadude 5 years ago

    With Roy Halladay Ruben Amaro Jr already was at the point the Yankees were with CC Sabathia and werent scared to give every prospect they own and a lot of money for him, no other GM was willing or even thinking of going that route and good for the Blue Jays because unlike the other Aces, they were the only one who really got an Ace like haul for their Ace.

  18. woadude 5 years ago

    With Cliff Lee it gets comical, in the excitement of finally landing Roy Halladay Amaro just gave him to the Mariners making Jack Z look like a genius, only problem was Jack Z isnt a genius because Cliff Lee stated the Mariners never attempted to offer him a contract, I mean they didnt even try? so they gave him to Texas for Justin Smoak who could be good, he could need a few years, while Cliff Lee is pitching in the playoffs and had a good game against Tampa, again the Dodgers were supposed to be in on this guy?

  19. stovin 5 years ago

    Would if the Orioles were to sign Erik Bedard to a 1 year deal and see how he turns out. He did good in the past here. If he can stay healthy he could be a great ace. If he does turn out to be great this year then we should offer him a 2-3 year extension. If we do get Bedard I still think we should get Garland too. Rotation 1: Garland 2: Bedard 3: Guthrie 4: Matusz 5: Bergy. And if Bedard can’t stay healthy then we put Arrieta in his spot. Then we offer the Padres Pie, Tillman, Egan, Snyder and Albers for AG. But AG has to agree to sign a long term deal. Sign Izzy SS, Inge 3B and Benoit for bullpen help. Looks good to me!

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