Pedro Martinez. Manny Ramirez. Jason Varitek. John Wetteland. Ken Hill. Johnny Damon. Tim Wakefield.
Recognize those names? Dan Duquette certainly does. As the ex-GM of the Expos and Red Sox, Duquette acquired all of those player through either trade or free agency.
That’s why it’s no surprise to hear the Orioles’ name in connection to a pursuit for free agent pitcher Roy Oswalt or — though I’ll admit some surprise here — in the final stages of handing out giant extension to Adam Jones.
While much of Baltimore was surprised/annoyed/indifferent to the hiring of Duquette this past winter, the Orioles may have found the best person for the job after being spurned by less accomplished names.
The one thing that was evident about Duquette during his tenures in Montreal and Boston was an eye and desire for talent. While GM’s would love to win anyway possible, this guy never attempted to build scrappy teams. He attempted to build juggernauts.
While his track record with trades and free agent moves is excellent — add in Jason Hammel to that group — his draft skills were also very beneficial. Marquis Grissom, Cliff Floyd, Rondell White, Nomar Garciaparra, and Kevin Youkilis were all Duquette draft picks. Jorge De La Rosa was a Duquette era draft pick used by Theo Epstein to complete the Curt Schilling trade in 2003.
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