Orioles Interested In Jhonny Peralta As Left Fielder

Jhonny Peralta appears to be receiving a good amount of interest out of the AL East as the Orioles now have interest in him in addition to the Yankees, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  The O's like Peralta as a left fielder whereas the Yankees, presumably, view Peralta as insurance at shortstop and third base.

Peralta won't come cheap – teams like the Mets expected the former Tigers veteran to command a two-year deal, but he's currently seeking a three-year, $45MM+ pact.  It may seem like a lofty goal for a player who missed 50 games due to ties to the Biogenesis scandal last season, but because Peralta offers a solid bat at a typically light-hitting postiion, he came in at No. 21 on Tim's Top 50 Free Agents list for this winter.  However, it remains to be seen if the O's value him enough at left field to outbid one of the several clubs interested in using him at his natural position.

Peralta slashed .303/.358/.457 with 11 homers in 448 plate appearances for the Tigers in 2013.  He picked up some limited experience in left field in the final three games of the regular season and in the playoffs.  The temporary move to the outfield was necessitated by the Tigers' acquisition of Jose Iglesias to fill the void at shortstop when Peralta was suspended.

Peralta wouldn't have to serve as a left fielder for the duration of his entire contract were he to theoretically sign with the O's; shortstop J.J. Hardy is a free agent after the 2014 campaign, so Baltimore could use Manny Machado at third or short and Peralta at the other position in 2015 and beyond.

Steve Adams contributed to this post.

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