Orioles Notes: Arroyo, Burnett, Payroll

Now that Bronson Arroyo has agreed to terms with the Diamondbacks, the Orioles have one fewer option available in their search for a starting pitcher, Eduardo A. Encina of the Baltimore Sun writes. It was reported last night that the Orioles and Diamondbacks were the top contenders for Arroyo. Encina notes that the fact that the Orioles are in the American League (and perhaps, more specifically, the tough AL East) hurt them in their pursuit of Arroyo, and appears to be hurting them in their pursuit of A.J. Burnett as well. If the Orioles can't get Burnett, their next logical choices would be Ubaldo Jimenez or Ervin Santana (although draft-pick forfeiture is an issue in both cases), or perhaps Suk-Min Yoon. Encina also notes that Fernando Rodney's pact with the Mariners makes it increasingly likely that the Orioles will fill their closer position internally. Here's more on the Orioles.

  • The Orioles' highest priority remains a top-of-the-rotation starter, writes MASNsports.com's Roch Kubatko. Kubatko suggests that the Orioles should make sure they outbid any of Burnett's NL suitors, then let the press know they did so if Burnett chooses to go to stay in the NL anyway. They should also be willing to give up their draft pick for Jimenez, Santana or Kendrys Morales. Kubatko also suggests that Tim Hudson, who signed early in the offseason, would have been a good addition for the Orioles.
  • Many Orioles fans are upset about the team's relatively thrifty offseason thus far, but the correlation between spending and winning isn't that strong, MASNsports' Steve Melewski writes. Only three of the ten highest-payroll teams made the playoffs last year (the Dodgers, Red Sox and Tigers), while three of the bottom five teams did (the Pirates, Athletics and Rays). Spending and trying to win aren't the same thing, Melewski says.

33 Responses to Orioles Notes: Arroyo, Burnett, Payroll Leave a Reply

  1. Three Definitions of Leader 1 year ago

    Hopefully Burnett comes back to Pittsburgh and is a leader in every sense of the word.

    • Damon Bowman 1 year ago

      Based on the columns that came out recapping Pittsburgh’s 2013 season, it sure sounds like the team wouldn’t want any part of Burnett coming back. Between the report of him throwing a tantrum when told he wouldn’t start a playoff game and the occasional mid-game barking between Burnett and his teammates, it looks like he might not be as welcome as we’re led to believe.

  2. Eugene in Oregon 1 year ago

    Agree completely that ‘spending and trying to win aren’t the same thing,’ but ‘trying to win’ requires improving your team — especially when the other teams in your division are improving theirs. The O’s off-season, at least from a distance, has not demonstrated any real effort to improve the team. Maybe they’re counting on some internal candidates I’m unaware of, but Baltimore had some holes they needed to fill and I don’t think they’ve filled them either by spending, trading, or positioning younger players to move up.

    • dgimbel 1 year ago

      Really, the only team that has significantly improved is the Yankees. The Rays have a lot of young talent that will get better and give them more wins, but other than Balfour and Loney havent made real strides in free agency. The Orioles, Red Sox an Blue Jays have all been relatively quiet

      • Damon Bowman 1 year ago

        The Yanks have spent money, and you can’t call them out for not trying to fill the holes from 2013. However, there isn’t a position on the Yankees that isn’t an injury waiting to happen. Beltran is the only player in the starting eight who didn’t spend time on the DL last season.

        • dgimbel 1 year ago

          Spending time on the DL doesn’t make you an injury waiting to happen. Baseball’s a long season and players get hurt. Only Jeter, Roberts and Ellsbury are risky players and

          • dgimbel 1 year ago

            they all have plenty of backups

      • Mitch Augustyn 1 year ago

        The Yankees have not improved when you figure they got a second baseman the Orioles did not want and lost their only All-Star. They lost two of their starting five and at least three from the bullpen. They got a decent catcher for the first time in a few years but he has not caught over 130 games since 2010 and he had less doubles the past two years combined as Wieter had last year. Ellsbury is a great centerfielder but is he much different than Gardner. had to carry two of your three outfielders with little power and Beltran is 37 and history of injuries. Tamp and Baltimore are good young teams Orioles solid defensively with 3 Gold Glovers and Tampa has great pitching as does Boston. Orioles have some good young pitching in Zack Britton who won 10 games on a team that won 69 games in 2011 and Steve Johnson will have a much better year than last. With one starter 31 years old teh orioles are the youngest team in baseball. They will pick up a starter and bet it is Jimenez.

        • dgimbel 1 year ago

          You failed to mention that the pitchers that they lost were an old Andy Petite and Phil ‘Homerun’ Hughes and that they gained a stuf in Tanaka. All of their position players were injured last year, however the Yankees were extremely unlucky last year in terms of injuries and almost everyone spent time on the DL. Also their outfield, Beltran and Ellsbury, isn’t low power especially in Yankee stadium. Finally, Jeter and Roberts are probably going to find DL time this year but they have a lot of depth up the middle this year. If you were trying to imply or justify the Orioles horrendous offseason by bashing te Yankees spending then get over your team. They have no second baseman, left fielder, DH, an ace or a legit closer

          • Mitch Augustyn 1 year ago

            Phil Hughes had how many starts last year? Guess they did not have anyone better or Girardi would have used him. Pettitte is old, Mo rivera was 43 but the Yankees have 40% of the 25 over 30 years old at last count. The Orioles have Flaherty at second base and Jonathon Schoop waiting and will be the second baseman for a decade. We do have a third baseman and not sure who the Yankees will use there. Not worried about the orioles offense but it was the Yankees that had 40 something games in which they failed to score more than two runs. Better hope that Sabathia has a comeback year or it will be another $25m a year mistake.
            When you start buying your team it shows a team is desperate. Got to fill those empty blue seats though. New york will never support a losing team. Eben when seats were $6 a piece in the late 1970’s they still did not fill the seats. Ellsbury has very minimal power did he hit 9 hrs last year? The orioles second baseman did that in just over 200 at bats last year. I would say that Flaherty has three times the power of Ellsbury then. The difference is that the Yankees had to rebuild and the orioles did not. Should have kept Granderson.

  3. There is a strong correlation between spending and winning. The Blue Jays, Angels, all faltered after making big splashes. But nearly all the World Series teams made some sort of move that came via spending. Even if they’re role players, they matter in a long season.

    The Orioles need to spend money. They might have to spend a couple more bucks on someone than they think they should have to. That’s free agency. Dumpster diving rarely leads to the postseason. The Orioles core needs help.

    • dgimbel 1 year ago

      This is true. In the past 5 years, the Cardinals, Giants, Phillies, Red Sox, Tigers, Rangers and Yankees have been the world series teams and all of them made significant additions via free agency/trade the year they made their pennant run.

  4. Bob George 1 year ago

    The O’s need a lot more than just one good veteran SP.

    • Lookouts400 1 year ago

      No, they don’t.

    • Robert 1 year ago

      Actually, it’s exactly what they need – someone to eat up innings. Part of the reason the bullpen got spent last year was because the pitchers could not go 7 for the longest time. Their bullpen is still solid, their defense is among the best in the game and their offense – while flawed in OBP – still produces where it counts… runs.

    • mstrchef13 1 year ago

      You are right, but not in the way that you think you are right. The O’s need healthy seasons from Chen, Gonzalez, and Markakis. They need for Britton, Matusz, Gausman, and Machado to continue their development, especially Britton. They need Jones and Davis to keep on keeping on. They need Wieters to rediscover his love for getting on first base. They need Lough to rediscover his OBP skills from the minors. They need someone to step up (Urrutia, Reimold, Young, someone) and grab the DH spot by the horns.
      Of course, with the exception of a very select few teams, doesn’t every team need health and development to be successful? But the O’s get slammed for believing it will happen. Go figure.

      • Well said. Britton and Norris will be the keys to the O’s season IMO, along with the others you mention. No remaining FA aside from Burnett is that much more likely to succeed than in-house options, and if he won’t accept the challenge of pitching in the AL east, I don’t want him anyway.

      • TD272 1 year ago

        I think management is getting slammed for doing nothing except giving away an All-Star closer for basically nothing. I honestly didn’t mind moving Johnson if he was going to be replaced by a reliable closer. If that wasn’t going to happen then at least they could use the money to bring in a good SP. Relying on health and development doesn’t do much to excite the fan base.

      • Lefty_Orioles_Fan
        Lefty_Orioles_Fan 1 year ago

        Do you believe Chef?

        • mstrchef13 1 year ago

          More than you do, I’m sure. I have been convinced for a while now that Dave Wallace was the best offseason acquisition the team made (or could have made), and that he will make all of our pitchers better. Will that be enough? We’ll see, but yes, I believe.

          • Lefty_Orioles_Fan
            Lefty_Orioles_Fan 1 year ago

            Regardless, though they should sign a Veteran Pitcher.
            Whether it’s Jimenez or Capuano.

          • mstrchef13 1 year ago

            Chris Capuano? Really? That dude was bad pitching in Dodger Stadium last year. I wouldn’t want him at the rookie minimum.

          • Lefty_Orioles_Fan
            Lefty_Orioles_Fan 1 year ago

            You are such a funny little bird! We never agree on anything anymore, I am not sure if we ever did! =P
            There is nothing wrong with Capuano, he knows how to pitch!
            The Orioles current team is not good enough to take the division in 2014! No way! Quite frankly, when I was sitting there along the left field line during the 1st division playoff series in 14/15 years in 2012. Despite that I was excited and happy that the O’s were back. There was a part of me that still felt Angelos hasn’t done a blessed thing to help improve this team during the lost years and Duquette patches the team with cheap quilt like material that the 5 and Dime would be ashamed of selling!
            I really mean that. This off-season has been nothing short of silly!

          • mstrchef13 1 year ago

            I can’t remember the last time we agreed on anything Oriole related either. I’m way too positive for you and you’re way to negative for me. Still, I enjoy the arguments because you think things through, you make good points, and you’re very civil. You’re just wrong. LOL

          • Lefty_Orioles_Fan
            Lefty_Orioles_Fan 1 year ago


          • mstrchef13 1 year ago

            Chris Capuano? Really? That dude was bad pitching in Dodger Stadium last year. I wouldn’t want him at the rookie minimum.

          • Rabbitov 1 year ago

            Don’t like Jimenez or Capuano as signings. At this point the O’s have to look for a trade or hope someone like Santana looks like he could be a ballplayer again. Ridiculously bad offseason.

    • EightMileCats 1 year ago

      Not really. They’ve got outstanding defense. A really solid BP. And an offense that puts up runs. What they’re missing is a real top of the rotation talent. Sadly, I’m not sure it’s there in FA anyway. The options are Jimenez(inconsistent) and Santana(up and down on a season to season basis thus far in his career).
      Really, the options for ToR were Tanaka(unavailable now) and Price(if the Rays would still entertain trading him). Issue with Price is it’ll likely cost prospects the O’s aren’t willing to deal.

  5. jmo 1 year ago

    I wonder if they will go into July or August without a legit fifth starter again.

  6. pft2 1 year ago

    “Many Orioles fans are upset about the team’s relatively thrifty
    offseason thus far, but the correlation between spending and winning
    isn’t that strong”

    Balderdash. Last year was a bit of an outlier with teams like the Yankees suffering significant injuries and none of the low payroll teams made it pasts the division series.

    Only 1 teams with a payroll in the bottom half has won a World Series in the last 19 years. The teams with the number 1 and number 2 payrolls over the last 17 years have won the World Series 8 times, and they are both in the AL East.

    Taking account revenue sharing dollars, the Orioles spent less than 40% of their revenue on payroll, well below the MLB average of 47%. Only 3 of the 10 playoff teams last year spent at a lower rate.

  7. Though spending doesn’t necessarily equal winning, it does help fill gaps.

    Moving Johnson to the A’s was a good move given Buck’s lack of confidence in him after the Diamondbacks series and is declining production. Maybe he’ll get his release point and control back. Not getting a prospective closer by now is troubling.

    At this point the O’s need two things: a top tier SP and a DH that with above average power and OBP. Defensively you just can’t better than what they’ve got. Hopefully we’ll get both of those positions locked down in the next week or so.

  8. dgimbel 1 year ago

    Homeruns aren’t indicative of power. Ellsbury has great doubles power to all fields. The Yankees upgraded catcher, first base, third base and center this year by adding potential all stars at each of those positions. Their offense is completely different this year thsn last year. Gardener and Soriano are the only guys in this years order that hit in last years. And I’d take the Yankees staff over the collection of back end starters the Orioles have composed to go out there this year. Also, Schoop isn’t as hyped as your saying. He could very well bust. And this Orioles nation that has arose only comes around when the Orioles are a contender, so not much loyalty there either.

  9. MB923 1 year ago

    A weak rotation is what hurt them last year and it could very well hurt them again this year. I expect a similar record for them assuming their offense is as good as it was

    For the Yankees, all depends on the health. They could be an 80 win team, they could be a 90+ win team. Their rotation improved, their bullpen took a bit of a hit with Mo leaving so pretty much it appears their bullpen will be all farm players with the exception of Matt Thornton (FA) and Shawn Kelly (trade)

    “The Red Sox have to be considered favorites right now, but even they have holes, so, just because the Orioles haven’t made the so-called big splash, there is still reason for great optimism at OPACY. Should be a shootout in the ALE this year.”

    100% agree. Hoping for another good season

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