Hope is a dangerous thing

April 16, 2010 | John West

I offer hope in an utterly hopeless season that lies in front of all the Orioles fans out there.  I also believe my hope is based in reality, or so I hope.  (This post is brought to you by the word “hope”)

We all know that given equal dollars, a free agent will sign almost anyplace else other than Baltimore.  We also know that it is rare that this current regime offers equal dollars.  They tend to offer “fair” market value, as determined by them.  Let’s move forward in the assumption that this policy will not change.

Last year we needed a top of the line starting pitcher, and as usual, none would come here.  So we traded for a veteran, Millwood, who was in the final year of an overpriced contract.  That way, he had to come here, and we didn’t have to give up much (Chris Ray) because Texas was happy to unload his salary.

Let’s take this approach, and get us a BIG BAT.

I have identified 3 Big Bat options that are out there with lots of money and years left on massive contracts.  My guess is that the teams they are on would be thrilled to dump the contract with little in return, in terms of talent.

First… Alfonso Soriono – Cubs – Outfielder.  He has an 8 year contract, running from 2007 through 2014, that will pay him (please raise left pinky to your mouth) $136 million dollars.  I don’t love this, but he is a bat.

Second…. Carlos Lee – Astros – Outfielder.  He has a 6 year contract, running from 2007 through 2012, that will pay him (again with the pinky) $100 million dollars.  This is more likely, as there are less years and less money involved.  Still, an improvement in the lineup.

Finally, and the guy I really want…… Miguel Cabrera – Tigers – First Base which we need.  He has an 8 year contract, running from 2008 through 2015, that will pay him $152 million dollars.  That’s $19 million a year.  That is EXACTLY what a BIG BAT at a position that requires a BIG BAT will cost.  He is a freakin hitting machine, both average and power.  He hits right handed and would be the perfect bat in our lineup for the next 5 years.

I don’t know what Detroit would want in terms of a trade, but I bet you that if the Orioles say they will take on the entire contract, I think the Tigers would take a back-up single A talent and the deal would be done.

Now that’s some HOPE you can believe in.  Make it happen Andy!