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Making the final tweaks…
Posted By Ron Burr On Apr 2 2010 @ 2:51 pm In Baltimore Orioles | 1 Comment
With just 4 days until Opening Day (Tuesday April 6th @ Tampa), the Orioles are making the final moves to their 25 man roster, including…
This is a smart move. Brian Roberts seems to be doing well with the back issue, and has played in 3 straight spring training games. However, the fact that he has played in 3 straight games is in any way noteworthy is of itself alarming, and as much as I like Ty Wigginton and Robert Andino I am not so willing to put my faith in them for an extended period of time if Roberts goes down. And while this probably means the end of Andino in an Orioles uniform, it is likely for the best for this year. Plus it isn’t like utility infielders are so rare of a commodity.
I know that a lot of fans want to see Chris Tillman pitching every 5 days, just like they want to see Jake Arrieta pitching every 5 days. The fans are having visions of them (along with Brian Matusz) competing for Cy Youngs year after year) dancing in their heads like orange and black sugarplums, but Andy MacPhail ad Dave Trembley are too smart to push them into an untenable situation. Matusz is ready, but he is the exception to the norm. Tillman and Arrieta will benefit from getting regular work with less pressure. And let us not forget that while the 5th starter is going to be in the regular rotation early, it won’t be as often after the O’s run the April / May “Gauntlet of DOOM” (patent pending), and since Tillman is considered a much bigger piece of the team’s future than David Hernandez, it is better if he keeps getting regular work after the schedule eases up a bit and the team starts skipping that 5th starter spot.
This is the move I like the least out of everything the team has done this year. This is one that I cannot even understand the rationale behind it. I have seen nothing that says the Orioles would have lost Craig Tatum if he had been optioned to AAA, and now they HAVE lost a veteran player in Chad Moeller that was recognized by both pitchers and position players as a font of knowledge. The only rationales I have heard that make any sense (and even these are specious at best) are that Tatum is a better defensive player (which is the usual defining characteristic of a backup catcher) and that the team wants to make sure it is known that it is Wieters’ team, and he is the leader (as most catchers are, since it is arguably the most important position on the field), and that keeping Moeller would have led to Wieters deferring to Moeller too much out of respect to his veteran standing. The second one makes a LITTLE bit of sense, but Moeller seems (to me, at least) as someone who knows his place in the pecking order, and could offer to Wieters what Kevin Milwood offers to Matusz, Hernandez, and Brad Bergesen. I can only hope that it works out as well for the team as they think it will.
Notable for only two reasons: He is the first player received in the Miguel Tejada and Erik Bedard trades to not make it with the organization. There are now 8 players left from the 10 the team got from the trades (the team traded George Sherrill for prospects Josh Bell and Steve Johnson last year at the deadline). And it allows me to post this picture…
I’ll miss having a whole season of being able to do that…
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URL to article: http://www.prosportsblogging.com/2010/04/02/making-the-final-tweaks/
URLs in this post:
 Trading for Julio Lugo: http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/bal-sp.orioles02apr02,0,5315574.story
 Tillman out, Hernandez in as 5th starter: http://baltimore.orioles.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100330&content_id=8995952&vkey=news_bal&fext=.jsp&c_id=bal
 Moeller out, Tatum in as Wieters’ backup: http://baltimore.orioles.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100330&content_id=8996858¬ebook_id=9016050&vkey=notebook_bal&fext=.jsp&c_id=bal
 Team releases Costanzo: http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/sports/schmuck/2010/04/costanzo_released.html
 Image: http://prosportsblogging.com/psb/uploads/2010/04/costanza.jpg
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