Orioles GM Mike Elias addressed several topics in an interview on 105.7 The Fan radio tonight, with MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko (Twitter links) and MLB.com’s Joe Trezza (Twitter links) among the reporters who shared some highlights. Elias noted that the Orioles’ winter shopping list includes pitching, veteran middle infield help, and a defensive shortstop. Such a focus on the middle infield doesn’t necessarily indicate a change from the combination of shortstop Jonathan Villar and second baseman Hanser Alberto, though given Villar’s big $10.4MM projected arbitration salary has led to a lot of speculation that the O’s will look to trade or non-tender him. While not mentioning any names, Elias said the club has to make “tough decisions” in regards to whether or not to tender contracts to all seven of their arb-eligible players.
In other general transactional news, Elias again stated that his front office is open to listening on trade offers for any player as Baltimore continues its rebuild. This includes Trey Mancini, though Elias said “we expect him to stay here,” noting that he hopes Mancini could be signed to a long-term contract.
More from Charm City…
- Gabriel Ynoa re-signed with the Orioles the same day that he was outrighted off their 40-man roster last offseason, though another quick reunion doesn’t appear likely this winter, MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko writes. It isn’t to say that Ynoa might not return on another minor league deal, but the righty will first see if he can land a Major League contract — possibly a tall order after a 2019 season that saw Ynoa post a 5.61 ERA, 2.58 K/BB rate, and 5.4 K/9 over 110 1/2 innings for Baltimore, while surrendering a whopping 29 home runs. The O’s may also look for more accomplished pitching options before maybe circling back to Ynoa later in the offseason.
- From that same piece, Kubatko also reports that the Orioles had John Mallee as a candidate to join the team’s coaching staff before Mallee accepted a position with the Angels as their new assistant hitting coach. Mallee had some significant ties to the Orioles, as he and manager Brandon Hyde both worked together on the Cubs’ coaching staff under Joe Maddon, and Mallee was the Astros’ hitting coach in 2013-14 when Baltimore GM Mike Elias was working in Houston’s front office.