Baltimore Orioles: Preferential treatment?
Kevin Gausman will make his spring debut for the Baltimore Orioles at Ed Smith Stadium this afternoon. My personal prediction is that Gausman will end of being the Orioles’ Opening Day starter, but time will tell. Nevertheless, it all starts for him today.
The Orioles are a team who’s physicals have been scrutinized severely over the years. Everyone remembers the situation with Grant Balfour, and a few others. The team was also dragged through the mud in these cases, because people just assumed it was the Orioles being a tough customer. However with that said, with the investment that teams make in players it’s not difficult to understand why they’d want everything to check out on a physical.
However Boston signed J.D. Martinez last week. The signing isn’t being announced until today. The rumor is that the BoSox saw something on the physical that they didn’t like. That has never been stated, however over the weekend apparently the contract was re-worked to better protect both sides.
Did Boston scrutinize Martinez’s physical in the same manner that the Orioles do with free agents? I’m not saying that they would be wrong to do so – in fact, I’m saying that they’re right to do it. However the fact is that the story isn’t getting the publicity that the Orioles got for doing this. Why is that? Is there a bias?
There may well be, however the other side of the coin is that the Orioles were up front about the fact that they backed out because of the physical’s results. Boston is saying it’s a non-factor. Of course the Orioles weren’t helped in the Balfour case by the fact that the player got in the media and criticized the Orioles’ physical himself. And in that case, the player went onto pitch for Tampa and was out of baseball due to injuries a year later. So maybe closely looking at the results isn’t such a bad thing.