The Orioles are “going through the medicals/paperwork” in an effort to finalize an agreement with an unknown team, per ESPN.com’s Buster Olney (Twitter link). While the “structure of a deal [is] in place,” Olney also stresses that “this in [sic] not finished yet.”
Despite the cautionary language, it’s obviously quite notable that the Baltimore organization has reached this point with another club. While numerous past arrangements have blown up at this stage — the O’s, especially, are notorious for finding health concerns — the exchange of medical information represents a significant step that would not take place without a clear path to a completed transaction.
Eduardo Encina of the Baltimore Sun had tweeted this morning that a deal was likely to be wrapped up by the end of the All-Star break. But it seems talks may be rather more advanced than that. It’d be quite a surprise, needless to say, if anything is finalized before Machado appears in his O’s uniform in today’s All-Star Game. But it now seems we’ll watch a fascinating trade situation unfold on a major stage for the game.
We heard last night that the Phillies were coming forward with a big offer. Then, it emerged this morning that the Dodgers appeared to be the favorite. Meanwhile, it seems the Yankees are largely bowing out of the process, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.
That mix of reporting provides the most recent series of clues as to just where the Machado sweepstakes may be headed. It’s unclear which organization is best situated to land him, let alone for what package of players, but it now seems reasonable to expect that we’ll learn the answers to those questions in relatively short order.