Orioles Rumors: Playing Fact or Fiction with the Latest Trade Chatter
With the acquisition of Francisco Rodriguez from the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday, as well as the trade that sent Matt Garza to the Texas Rangers, the Baltimore Orioles' rumor mill heading towards the trade deadline has gone somewhat dry.
Still, this is baseball, so there's always at least a few rumors going around and teams are always looking to upgrade in some fashion.
Let's go over some of those rumors that deal with the Birds and decide whether or not they have some actual truth to them.
Trade for Joe Saunders
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Although he didn't re-sign in the offseason, Joe Saunders pitched well for the O's. Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe writes that it wouldn't be surprising if the O's tried to reacquire the lefty.
Acquired last August, Saunders went 3-3 with a 3.63 ERA in seven starts for the Birds. However, it was his post-season performance that he's best remembered for, as he pitched well and picked up the win in the crucial AL Wild Card game against the Rangers.
The 32-year-old signed with the Mariners in the offseason and struggled to begin the year with his ERA well over 5.00 after May. However, he has pitched very well recently, going 4-0 in four July starts with a 1.73 ERA for the month. On the season, Saunders is 9-8 with a 4.28 ERA in 20 starts.
While it wouldn't be the biggest move for Baltimore, adding Saunders would provide some more rotation depth. Given his prior heroic efforts as an Oriole, it's plausible that general manager Dan Duquette trades for Saunders for the second straight year.
Trade Jason Hammel
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There's no question that Jason Hammel hasn't been great in his second season with the Orioles. His ERA is above 5.00 and he hasn't won a games since May 27.
That being said, the chances of him being traded are very low. He has an unfriendly contract worth $6.75M that expires at the end of the season and he has struggled. No team would ask for him in a trade.
However, that doesn't mean the O's won't look to add an extra starting pitcher. The O's could replace Hammel in the rotation if they decide to trade for another starter. That would probably just move Hammel to the bullpen with a slight chance that he'd get designated for assignment.
Trade for Jake Peavy
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The Orioles have shown some interest in White Sox starting pitcher Jake Peavy. According to Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports, the Orioles were one of a few teams scouting the former Cy Young Award-winner last Saturday.
So far this year, Peavy is 7-4 with a 4.19 ERA. He's not the pitcher he was when he won the NL Cy Young Award with the Padres in 2007, but he's still an effective starter who could help the Orioles down the line.
The biggest factor hurting the Orioles' pursuit of Peavy would be Chicago's asking price. With Baltimore having already passed on trading for Matt Garza, because the Cubs wanted too much, according to Buster Olney of ESPN.com, the O's interest in Peavey will likely fade away as well if the White Sox ask for a top-of-the-line prospect in return.
Still, while they aren't the favorite to get him, the Orioles have shown some interest, so there's still a shot they go after the 32-year-old.
Trade for a DH or Second Baseman
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The O's hope to have solved their DH issues with the addition of Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia, who was hitting .365 in the minors.
If Urrutia doesn't stick in Baltimore, it's still unlikely that they go after a DH, as both Wilson Betemit and Steve Pearce should be nearing their returns from injury shortly.
The Orioles' issue at second base also seems to be a thing of the past, as the return of Brian Roberts seems to have solved that problem.
Even if the oft-injured Roberts goes down again, the Orioles seem to be fine with Ryan Flaherty and Alexi Casilla sharing the job.