The Orioles Near-Term Outlook With Three Hypothetical Trades
The positive aspect of this disaster of a season is that we’re not entering late July wondering if the Orioles could stay within striking distance of the 2nd Wild Card. As such one era has formally closed, and from those ashes another begins.
(You can discuss this on the BSL Board here.)
Obviously any discussion of any organization starts with who is charge at the top. It’s clear that John and Louis Angelos have stepped-up and are now the primary faces of Ownership.
It seems apparent that Executive Vice President Dan Duquette will not be removed prior to seasons end. At that point, the Orioles will have to formally announce who takes the helm of Baseball Operations?
Will it be Brady Anderson? Ned Colletti?
Maybe someone else like:
Jason McLeod – Chicago Cubs, SVP, Player Development & Amateur Scouting
Amiel Sawdaye – Arizona Diamondbacks, SVP, & Assistant General Manager
Mike Elias – Houston Astros, Assistant General Manager, Player Acquisition
Josh Byrnes – LA Dodgers, SVP, Baseball Operations
I continue to think Anderson has to be the presumptive favorite.
Whoever it is, they will have to decide if they want Showalter back.
If Showalter departs, it’s just another aspect of the overall transition the organization will be undertaking.
The first embers of visible transition on the field, will begin with the pending trades of Manny Machado, Zach Britton, Brad Brach, and presumably (as long as he waives his No Trade Clause) Adam Jones.
The Orioles have had 7-8 teams show interest in Machado. Presently the Dodgers, Brewers, and Phillies seem like the presumptive leaders.
Houston seems like a great destination for Britton, and the Astros system seems to hold plus opportunities for the Orioles.
Cleveland taking Jones, and Givens could also work.
Let’s picture what the O’s could look like with three hypothetical trades.
Machado and Brach to Milwaukee for: Corbin Burnes, Brett Phillips, and Orlando Arcia.
Britton to Houston for: JB Bukauskas, Jonathan Arauz, and Garrett Stubbs.
Jones and Givens to Cleveland for: Triston McKenzie, Aaron Civale, and Oscar Gonzalez.
How would that leave the O’s looking for ’19?
Rotation: Gausman, Bundy, Cobb, and Cashner can all be back for ’19.
Internal 5th options: Burnes, Ramirez, McKenzie, Akin (not on the 40 man roster), Civale, Hess, Yacabonis, Harvey, Bukauskas
Bullpen: O’Day, Castro, Scott, Bleier…. those four would seem like locks if healthy and not traded.
Guess Castro could be a rotation option as well. Bleier is expected back next for the start of Spring Training.
Internal Bullpen options: Wright, Yacabonis, Hess, Hart, Fry, Meisinger, Araujo, Kline (not on the 40)
Infield: Beckham*, Arcia, Schoop, Davis, Sisco
OF Options: Mancini, Mullins, Stewart, Phillips, Hays, McKenna, Santander, Rickard
Bench: Joseph / Wynns, UTI capable of SS, 4th OF, Wilkerson or Peterson
*Mountcastle taking over 3rd after the O’s gain an additional year of service time. Could also start the season with Dosch at 3rd, and Beckham as the Super UTI.
1) You’d have the makings of a new ‘Calvary‘ with Burnes, McKenzie, Bukauskas, Harvey, Akin, DL Hall, and Grayson Rodriguez all under wraps. That much better looking if Cody Sedlock ever finds himself.
2) The payroll commitments in the next few years are low. If the O’s wanted to get out from Davis’ contract, they’d have the opportunity if they so choose. I doubt they will, until / if they are convinced his issues are not correctable.
3) Trumbo’s career OPS is .763. This year, he’s at .764 entering today. If you pay up on his remaining deal, can you move him?
4) If you are able to move Trumbo, that frees you up to move Mancini to DH, and improve on Mancini defensively in LF.
4a) Hays has had a lost year with poor performance and injury. He’ll probably have to go back to the Minors, produce, and earn his way back. That said, I wouldn’t be shocked (depending on who is added) if he went to Spring Training and competed in-terms of potentially making the roster if he was healthy.
4b) Phillips has a strong arm, and said to be capable of playing CF. If Phillips took over RF, Mullins takes over CF, and Hays (or McKenna) eventually takes over LF… the O’s could have a defensive OF with a lot of range.
4c) Stewart figures to be up shortly. Showalter already hinted that Mancini will be getting time (at-least preparing) in RF. If you eventually buy out Davis…. maybe we see Mancini eventually at 1st, Stewart to DH, and the aforementioned Hays or McKenna, Mullins, Phillips OF?
5) Arcia did some positive things with the bat in ’17 (offensive numbers are poor this year), and his defensive numbers look outstanding here in ’18. If you can get a combination of the both, you really would have something.
6) Here is a list of pending Free Agents.
7) In the off-season, I’d expect the O’s would either reach extensions with Gausman and Schoop or look to trade both.