Baltimore Orioles: The argument for Nick Markakis
There was some buzz this week about the Baltimore Orioles possibly re-acquiring former right fielder Nick Markakis. My personal opinion is that it would be a mistake. I’m in the group that says that he would simply stunt the organization’s growth in terms of some of the young outfielders who will be looking to see time in the bigs.
But is there any upside to the O’s bringing Markakis back? The answer to that is yes. First off, the O’s haven’t had an everyday right fielder since Markakis left. Granted in some cases that’s given them the ability to be nimble with the lineup in a sense, however it would solidify that spot going into next year. It would also probably solidify the DH role, as Trumbo would slide into that slot on a more full-time basis.
Markakis may have declining power numbers, but this past year he got on base at a .354 clip. As a team in 2017, the Orioles had a collective OBP of .312. So whether it’s a single, a double, or a walk, Markakis’ presence would help the Orioles get more base runners out on the pond.
Speaking of declining power numbers, there was one category in which Markakis has seen a slight uptick since leaving the Orioles: doubles. In his final three seasons in Baltimore, Markakis never reached 30 doubles on the year. In his three years in Atlanta, he’s hit 38, 38, and 39 doubles respectively.
All of these things would help the Orioles going into 2018 – there’s no doubt. Whether those things outweigh the potential risks however is a different story.