Guthrie deal reminds us…the Orioles aren’t trying to win

February 06, 2012 | Drew Forrester


I don’t know why Dan Duquette REALLY traded Jeremy Guthrie.  One bird on a tree tells me Guthrie wasn’t a locker room favorite of Buck Showalter’s because of his pro-player stance as it relates to collective bargaining issues and things like that.  Guthrie was reportedly an outspoken internal critic of the club’s facility in Ft. Lauderdale and may have snitched on the club when certain minimum standards weren’t met by the club during spring training.  Whether that had anything to do with it…or perhaps Duquette really believes Jason Hammel is better than Jeremy Guthrie…I guess we’ll never know.  I can’t imagine you’d make a trade (and I’m not forgetting Matt Lindstrom, but he’s a throw-in here — nothing more) for a player and knowingly get the short end of the deal, but that’s apparently what Duquette pulled off today.  Yes, Hammel is 3 years younger.  Yes, he’s cheaper.  Yes, he’s under control for two years.  But is he better than Guthrie?  Is he going to help the Orioles win more games in 2012?  Answer:  No chance.

You’ll see.

And don’t think for one minute I’m saying this deal spells doom for the Orioles in 2012.  They were doomed anyway.  It’s not about the losing.  It’s about the team’s management trying to cast us under some kind of spell that makes us think they’re on the verge of winning.

“We’re essentially replacing Jeremy’s innings with those that Hammel will give us,” Duquette said today about the trade.  This is also the same guy – Duquette – who has reminded us on several occasions over the last month that Dana Eveland threw 185 innings a season ago.  He did.  In the minor leagues.

If 30 less innings is “essentially”, than Duquette is right.  Hammel has averaged about 175 innings a year over his last three seasons as a starter in Colorado.  Guthrie has averaged 205 in that time.  And his numbers have been better.  Period.

But I’m starting to see Duquette’s way of thinking.

It probably goes something like this — “The fans are stupid in Baltimore…hell, they must be if they’ve been buying tickets for this mess over the last decade…I’ll just pull the trigger on this deal and they’ll figure I know what I’m doing.”

I don’t buy it.

The deal was made today for one reason.  In the next two years, the Orioles will spend less on Jason Hammel and Matt Lindstrom than they would have over the next two years with Jeremy Guthrie.  It’s that simple, really.

It’s always about the same thing with the Orioles.

Saving money.  

And not really trying to win.  

It’s still the new Oriole Way.





12 Comments For This Post

  1. eric Says:

    O’s aren’t trying to win but keeping Guthrie doesn’t prove they’re trying to win either. He’s a middle rotation pitcher who’s trending downward on a team going nowhere. The fact that we haven’t signed or traded for a proven top flight player this offseason proves we’re not trying to win. Trading Guthrie doesn’t prove anything. It’s just rearranging deck chairs on the O’s Titanic. If the O’s were smart they would be trading Guthrie,Jones,Markakis,Hardy and Johnson for young talent that will be ready to contribute in 3-4 years which is the soonest this organization could contend. Instead we have the fewest top 100 prospects of any team in the division which is laughable considering where we’ve drafted the last 10 years. (DF: Not getting rid of Guthrie to IMPROVE the team shows they’re not trying to win. That’s all they could do with him? In that case, just hold on to him. Whatever. It doesn’t really matter. But they’re definitely not trying to win.)

  2. eric Says:

    Oh and Lindstrom isn’t a throw in. He immediately becomes the O’s second best Relief pitcher behind JJ which tells you all you need to know. (DF: I guess. I’ll call him a throw-in, though.)

  3. Marcus Halberstram Says:

    I can’t wait to hear what Guthrie says at his Colorado press conference. He is going to feel the same as the West Memphis Three. Or like Andy Dufrane after he came out of the sewer pipe.

  4. Mike T Says:

    This is not a story. He is a nice man who is an average ballplayer on a very bad team. I don’t understand the negativity? What don’t you get buddy? The O’s are not trying to get better and we don’t care. We have moved on but WNST has not.The fan in you has not.My boy is 11 and my girl is 8. They have been to 3 Nascar events and an NFL event @ Heinz Field.I have never taken them to an O’s game and never will because I WON’T WATCH THEM WHEN THEY’RE ON TV.They should have traded Roberts with Jeremy .Here’s a guy who if he were in the NFL he would be playing.He can’t even attend that stupid fanfest

  5. over40Don Says:

    are you guys planning any bus trips to some Nationals games?

  6. Dan Says:

    Yes, we all know that they are not trying to win, anyone with an ounce of sense knows that . But they are trying ( and doing a pretty good job of it ) to make money in this town. To Pete this is a good deal, one Major League (and I use the term loosly) pitcher for two Major League pitchers – Economics 101. I think if they sold a million tickets a year they woud still make a nice profit .
    What more could a businessman want . Go Pete !

  7. Robbie from Timonium Says:

    Let’s just get through those first 161 meaningless games and maybe knock out a playoff contender to end the season on a high note again. Maybe Manny Ramirez will be available to play by then. But darn, he might not be ready in time to be our obligatory “All-Star” in July.

  8. unitastoberry Says:

    One journey man leaves two come aboard. My only question is will there be free ice again on day games above 100 degrees? Perhaps JR Orioles can actually play instead of just watching in the stands with their dads?

  9. barnyard Says:

    Drew, Jim Duquette watched too much of the movie: “Moneyball”. Big mistake. He’s no Billy bean & far from a Brad Pitt. Building a team on the cheap using a statistician sounds nice on paper & even the Red Sox copied that when they won their first title in over 80-90 years but look closer, they still had to cough up big bucks for the key pieces. That’s someting tight ass Angelos has refused to do. He was burned on the Albert Belle deal & has retreated from spending ever since. He can make the same , (more) $$ if he just puts bodies on the field @ minimum salaries rather than to spend big & still lose to the Yankees & Sox. (DF: It’s Dan Duquette, not Jim…and you’re right, that’s what it looks like is happening.)

  10. jpetrosino Says:

    It’s obvious that everything the Orioles/Angelo$ revolves around making easy money rather than try and invest and build a real team to draw fan interest. I believe the Comcast deal to pay for the rights faciliates this bad behavior and after 16 years of losing and low fan interest, I think the better question is this:

    Why does Comcast still pay to carry MASN when there is no leverage by Angelos to yank MASN if Comcast choses to stop paying the $2/$3 per month fee per subsctiber? Go ahead and pull MASN and I doubt Comcast would suffer that much. Force Angelos to live off of advertising and when nobody is watching or attending games, then the emporer will be finally exposed.

    Go ahead and ask this question to the powers-to-be at Comcast and they may just agree. God knows I haven’t watched any Oriole games on TV for 4 or 5 years and counting.

  11. The "Armchair QB" Says:

    I may not be a huge baseball fan, but as a native Baltimorean, I still bleed black and orange! That’s why I can only think of cliches in describing the O’s managment, such as, “behavior is reality” and “you can’t make a silk purse out of a sows ear”! This owner has enough money to be competitive if he wanted to, but by his actions, he obviously does not want to. So, with spring training around the corner, what’s the…..point?! It does look like “Chinese Lunches” will be a favorite among the new pitching staff…….

  12. jake Says:

    you guys are all being a little harsh.The Orioles PITCHING is what is keeping us from winning.Our offense is comming together pretty nice and hit the 4th most homeruns in the mlb.If some these pitchers can pitch to their potential such as britton,arrieta,matuez,wada,and chen we could have a pretty good year.has anyone looked at the stats of Wei-Yin Chen or Tsuyoshi Wada? In 116 career games Wada has a 57-36 record with a 2.88 ERA with 782.1 innings pitched and Chen is 36-30 in 100 games with a 2.48 ERA in 631.1 innings with a whip of 1.063.I know thety are both from out of the country but we have to hope they pan out.Matuez is looking good in spring getting his velocity back up to 92-94 and when he is pitching well he is good.I 20 years old and have watched them be bad for years but im not ready to give up on them yet when i feel that they are VERY close.

Leave a Reply