JULY 31: The Orioles and Mariners are currently in talks regarding Miley, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
JULY 30: The Orioles are “taking a hard look” at Wade Miley, reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Baltimore has been in the market for a left-handed starter for more than a month, and Miley would function as something of a buy-low candidate for GM Dan Duquette if a trade is ultimately reached.
Seattle acquired the 29-year-old Miley in an offseason trade that sent right-handed reliever Carson Smith to the Red Sox, but the southpaw hasn’t performed up to expectations in spite of the move to a larger, more pitcher-friendly setting. Miley entered the day with a 5.23 ERA, 6.3 K/9, 2.8 BB/9 and a 45.9 percent ground-ball rate. A massive uptick in his homer-to-flyball rate has been the root of Miley’s ERA spike, though it should be noted that he dominated the Cubs today, holding Chicago to just one run on one hit and a walk with nine strikeouts in seven innings to drop his ERA to 4.98. Miley, in fact, has quietly begun to right the ship after his early woes, as he’s now logged a 3.80 ERA with a 33-to-15 K/BB ratio across his past 47 1/3 innings of work (eight starts).
Adding Miley does come with modest financial risk, as he’s owed $2.1MM through season’s end plus a guaranteed $8.75MM in 2017 and at least a $500k buyout of a $12MM option for the 2018 season. Of course, if he’s able to sustain his recent run of solid results, then that price would be a relative bargain for a 30-year-old innings eater.
The Orioles have received virtually no production out of the third, fourth and fifth spots in their entirely right-handed rotation this season, so the pursuit of an arm to help support Chris Tillman, Kevin Gausman and the club’s slugging lineup and strong bullpen certainly makes sense. Miley has reportedly emerged as a semi-likely candidate to be moved, as the Mariners have been open to dealing underperforming veterans in order to swap them out for younger options with the hopes of remaining afloat in the American League playoff picture.