Confirming expectations, Orioles executive VP Dan Duquette made clear that he has every intention of pushing for the post-season, as Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com reports. He expects a “seller’s market,” as do most observers, because “just a handful” of clubs profile as true sellers. But don’t expect Baltimore to take that opportunity to cash in any of its expiring contracts. “Our pending free agents, the most value they could have would be to this year’s ballclub and their contribution to this year’s team,” said Duquette. “So any pending free agents, we’d like to see them play their best for the Orioles and help us accomplish our goals. That has been our focus all year. … “We have some pretty solid depth to the team and within our organization. Our club is in the hunt and we want to stay in the hunt and we’re going to do what we can to supplement our major league club.”
Here’s more from the American League East:
- The Yankees plan to keep young second baseman Rob Refsnyder on the big league roster after the All-Star break, John Harper of the New York Daily News reports. Refsnyder, 24, has only logged two big league games, but could take time away from veteran Stephen Drew as the team continues to evaluate its middle infield options ahead of the trade deadline.
- Meanwhile, the have yet to sign 16th overall draft pick James Kaprielian, but multiple reports suggest that a deal is likely to get done. Sources tell Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (Twitter link) that the righty is likely to head to New York rather than returning to UCLA for a final year. And MLB.com draft guru Jim Callis, who has broken a significant portion of the draft signings this year, tweets that he anticipates an agreement — while adding that the Yankees will likely be forced to max out their spending right up to the line of giving up a pick in next year’s draft.
- Red Sox skipper John Farrell says that he sees good reason to acquire more pitching before the deadline, as Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reports on Twitter. Though Farrell indicated that he is confident in the current staff, he went on to say that “to add some arms to the group that we have … would go a long way to stabilize things.”