10:50am: A team source disputes that any offer was made to Burnett, tweets Eduardo Encina of the Baltimore Sun.
10:15am: The Orioles have extended an offer to free agent righty A.J. Burnett, Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports on Twitter. Though nothing is close at the moment, Passan notes that Baltimore will be a player in the starting pitching market.
Baltimore was strongly rumored to be a destination for Burnett last year, before he signed on with the Phillies. That was due in large part to the fact that the veteran was said to prefer to pitch for a team close to his Maryland home. This time around, however, he is said to be willing to play anywhere for a contender.
The O’s had a surprisingly effective rotation last year, in spite of the struggles of major free agent signee Ubaldo Jimenez. In terms of bottom-line results, the club’s rotation landed at the back end of the top dozen teams by measure of earned run average. ERA estimators, however, were generally less favorably inclined.