That breeze you hear against your window is the sound of Mark Reynolds swinging for the fences at Camden Yards.
According to ESPN’s Buster Onley, the O’s have traded pitchers Kam Mickolio and David Hernandez to the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for the 27 year-old slugger.
Here’s the good news about Reynolds. He hit 76 home runs in the last two seasons. He gives the Orioles a legitimate cleanup hitter and power corner infield, which the team sorely lacked since….um, for a really long time.
Here’s the bad news about Reynolds.
In the same two seasons he combined for 443 strikeouts. The Virginia native has led the league with over 200 k’s per season for the last three years.
Reynolds should be an interesting contrast to Nick Markakis’ “stare at strike three on the corner” strategy. Reynolds sees a lot of pitches, but he’s not afraid to take a whiff, either.
If the Orioles were able to land Reynolds for only Mickolio and Hernandez, this trade should be considered a success. Both pitchers have struggled with their command. A strikeout king in the minors, Hernandez was converted to the ‘pen in 2010. Mickolio, a 6’9″ Montana native, faltered in Spring Training last year and saw only limited action in the majors.
Mark Reynolds is no Adrian Gonzalez, and his .198 average in 2010 is cause for legitimate concern. However, he is a better pickup than the retreads the club signed last season (Yes, I’m still dogging you, Garrett Atkins. Never forget). He should hit for power in Camden Yards. However, he will have to increase his rate of contact if he hopes to remain a full-time player.
According to baseballreference.com, the Diamondbacks signed Reynolds for $5 million in 2011 and $7.5 million in 2012. His contract has an $11 million option for 2013 with a $500,000 buyout. The Orioles will inherit Reynolds’ contract.