With the deadline fastly approaching, the Orioles need to make another couple moves to ensure they continue in the playoff race throughout September. Still clinging to the final Wild Card spot, Baltimore should definitely be buyers this week, especially with a chance to make the playoffs since the Mid-90’s. Duquette already proved he was ready to be active in his deals for Jim Thome and Omar Quintanilla while continuing that philosophy for a young up and coming team.
The farm system isn’t very deep behind Dylan Bundy and Manny Machado; as the should remain untouchable for the betterment of this franchise’s future. But the Orioles do have one major assest all contending teams will be looking for an upgrade; their bullpen is possibly the best in MLB with plenty of depth. They cannot afford to depleit the entire back end of the pitching staff, but have the tools to move a couple guys without depleting the bullpen’s effectiveness.
Everyone that has made their way to Camden Yards this season knows the teams defencies. An upgrade to the back end of their rotation, the corner infield positions and outfield depth all would be welcome additions. Though they will not mortage the future, there are several options they should show interest in at the deadline that are cost effective.
Joe Blanton (SP Philadelphia Phillies): He is an innings eater an a solid fourth option in a rotation. He has plenty of playoff experience and could be a valuable asset to a team in a unique position for the first time in a decade and a half. The Phillies are in desperate need of bullpen help, while willing to unload Blanton because his contract is up after the season.
Ervin Santana (SP Los Angeles Angels): The Angels are another team looking to upgrade the bullpen and while obtaining Santana will cost more than Blanton, he is definitely a more talented player. Los Angeles has a lot of starting pitching depth and may be willing to move Santana to solidfy the 7th, 8th and/or 9th innings.
Allen Craig (UT St. Louis Cardinals): Craig is a guy without a position in St. Louis, making him expendable for another team in need of pitching help. Though he is not an elite defensive player, he can fill in at first or third for the O’s, while adding much needed pop to the lineup.
Placido Polanco (3B Philadelphia Phillies): Another one of the Phillies that may be involved in the fire sale this week. Polanco is no longer the player he once was, but is still great defensively and an upgrade over Baltimore’s current starters. In his last year of his contract, the risk is low while he can add experience to a young lineup.
David DeJesus (OF Chicago Cubs): He has versatility to play all of the outfield positions, as well as add the ability in several different spots in the lineup. DeJesus will cost a couple minor leaguers but none of top end value. He adds speed to the line-up, while solidifying the open door in left field.
Gaby Sanchez (1B Miami Marlins): The Marlins have already begun trading off parts and Sanchez may be the next to go. They have no room for him on the big league roster, with Carlos Lee and Logan Morrison, already in place in first base, making him relatively cheap to acquire. Even though he is having a down year, last year’s 19 HR performance and team friendly contract, are enough to take a flier on.