2012 Contract Issues: Baltimore Orioles

The Orioles are next in our 2012 Contract Issues series.

Eligible For Free Agency (6)

  • Vladimir Guerrero and Derrek Lee were signed as free agents to one-year deals totaling $15.25MM plus incentives.  Ideally, Orioles minor league player of the year Joe Mahoney will be ready to take over at first base in 2012.
  • Mike Gonzalez, signed as a closer at the cost of $12MM and a draft pick, seems to be third in the pecking order in an improved Orioles bullpen.  He's in need of a healthy year.
  • J.J. Hardy will be eligible for free agency, probably a year later than he thought he'd be.  Right now he's headed to the DL for a strained oblique; Hardy hasn't had 500 plate appearances in a season since '08.  Though Jose Reyes and Jimmy Rollins may also be on the free agent market, Hardy should be fairly popular.  His backup Cesar Izturis is also eligible for free agency.
  • Justin Duchscherer hopes to make his Orioles debut on April 21st.  He's battling hip and back issues.

Contract Options (1)

  • Koji Uehara: $4MM option vests with either 55 appearances or 25 games finished.  Though his elbow started barking during Spring Training, Uehara still has a good chance of meeting one of the requirements.

Arbitration Eligible (11)

A few of these players will fail to accrue enough service time to be arbitration eligible or will be non-tendered or released.  Jones, Guthrie, and Scott are the three cases that will be worth watching.  Guthrie and Scott could cost $9MM each, and Jones around $6MM.  It's hard to say at this point whether Scott will be a non-tender candidate.

2012 Payroll Obligation

The Orioles have a 2012 payroll obligation of about $36MM for 2012 according to Cot's Baseball Contracts, with Nick Markakis, Brian Roberts, and Mark Reynolds leading the way.  Assuming Uehara, Jones, Guthrie, Scott, Pie, and Johnson are retained, they'll be in the $69MM range – about $18MM short of the 2011 Opening Day payroll.  The Orioles should again have payroll space to work with, especially if one of the more expensive arbitration eligible players is traded.


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17 Comments on "2012 Contract Issues: Baltimore Orioles"


Member
$1742854
4 years 2 months ago

I wouldn’t extend Luke Scott until he showed me his papers.

Member
niched
4 years 2 months ago

Luke Scott was actually born in Santo Domingo in 1975.

Member
mwach1
4 years 2 months ago

can someone explain tendering/non-tendering a contract (re: Luke Scott)? I was under the impression that after the third round of arbitration, the player had the right to become a free agent.

Member
bbxxj
4 years 2 months ago

Under certain curcumstances players can earn the right to be elligible for four arb and only two pre-arb years instead of three of each. This is called being a super two player and it looks like Scott is one of them.

Member
bbxxj
4 years 2 months ago

Under certain curcumstances players can earn the right to be elligible for four arb and only two pre-arb years instead of three of each. This is called being a super two player and it looks like Scott is one of them.

Guest
4 years 2 months ago

Man, Brandon Snyder really dropped off the radar

Member
Rabbitov
4 years 2 months ago

The biggest problem with Snyder is even at his best his bat and glove never really played well at 1st base.

What you have is a guy with some offensive upside and who can play 3-4 different positions, but none of them well. I am still rooting for him to succeed.

Member
ugen64
4 years 2 months ago

the bat is a bigger concern. so far, he’s had nearly 700 plate appearances at AAA with an OPS below .700. that doesn’t play well at *any* position – even Robert Andino has a career .725 OPS at AAA. he’s only 24 this year so at least there’s plenty of time (Melvin Mora didn’t get his first major league action until he was 27, and Riemold is a more recent example of a late bloomer).

Member
4 years 2 months ago

I’m guessing the O’s will make a push to resign Hardy (assuming he comes back and plays okay). Scott is the one I see as most likely to be traded.

Member
basemonkey
4 years 2 months ago

The Free Agent picture is just about where you want it to be. The better guys there are aging, signed for one year contracts. Duke was low risk. The guy who they rolled the dice on but sucks (M. Gonzalez) is due to leave, and probably won’t be retained. A LHP who isn’t a sure thing to get at least Lefties out isn’t attractive.

Hardy is probably the only one worth keeping an eye on. His injury is not severe and he will be back in the lineup soon. What he flashed before he went down was sound defense and a above-average bat. Both are good things.

Member
Rabbitov
4 years 2 months ago

I agree with Hardy, I think his defense was much better than advertised. Highlight reel at times.

The real issue is after this season the O’s lose two areas of major production in 1st and DH, regardless of what you think of Lee and Vlad.

It will be an interesting offseason.

Member
ugen64
4 years 2 months ago

who was doubting his defense in the first place? among shortstops with more than 2,000 innings played between 2005 and 2010, he ranked 4th in UZR/150 behind Everett, Vizquel, and Brendan Ryan.