Here are a few early notes and takes on slugger Chris Davis’ new $161MM deal with the Orioles:
- With Davis back in the fold, the Orioles need to address their rotation, FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal writes. The O’s have had contact with Yovani Gallardo, but one sticking point there could be the qualifying offer — the Orioles would have had eight of the top 100 picks in the draft had Davis and Matt Wieters departed, but those players’ returns will reduce their total to six. That number would further drop if they were to sign Gallardo.
- Before signing Davis, the Orioles had been in talks with Yoenis Cespedes, but Cespedes was seeking even more money than the $161MM Davis got from the O’s, MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko tweets. The Orioles reportedly made an offer to Cespedes in the $90MM range.
- The Davis deal could be “Scott Boras’ most impressive victory over reason yet,” FanGraphs’ Dave Cameron writes. There was a limited market for first basemen and a number of strong hitters left on the market, and Davis’ profile as a slugging, whiff-prone first baseman about to head into his thirties is a very risky one. Also, Davis alone likely won’t push the Orioles into the playoffs next season, and the Orioles don’t seem well positioned for the next few seasons, when they’re likely to reap the most value from his contract.
- Keith Law of ESPN’s take (Insider-only) is somewhat similar to Cameron’s — Law notes that it seems unlikely that the strikeout-prone Davis will continue to produce at 2015 levels, and adds that few teams who might have been able to spend heavily on Davis had the hole at first base the Orioles did. Law also provides his take on the Royals’ deal with Ian Kennedy, which he also isn’t a fan of, given Kennedy homer-allowing tendencies and his underwhelming overall track record.