If there’s one thing the Baltimore Orioles have learned over time it’s that you absolutely have to value your players. At various points over the last ten years when there’s been push to keep a player, they’ve found ways to do it. For the most part.
Down the road we see a team in the Washington Nationals who’s struggling with that as we speak. Washington of course are the World Series Champions. However two of their biggest stars, Anthony Rendon and Stephen Strasburg are up for grabs. Publicly, Washington hasn’t even formally met with either player about an extension (both are represented by Scott Boras.) But plenty of other teams have.
For the sake of their fan base, I would hope that management and ownership isn’t just assuming that winning the World Series gives them carte blanche NOT to spend money. Especially when the guys in question are their guys. World Series or not, if both of those guys walk you could be looking at a fan revolt.
The point here is not to take shots at another team. (Although I suspect fans might accept one of those guys walking; but both?) However the question at hand is why teams overall don’t value their own players. One could argue that the Orioles did the same thing with Nick Markakis. However as you might remember, Markakis was injured at the time, and coming off of neck surgery. There was risk involved, which the Orioles weren’t willing to assume.
Teams such as NY (Yankees), Philadelphia, Boston, and LA (Dodgers) can’t really be blamed for swiping other people’s players. When the players are out there to be had and their former teams are making no effort to get them, you may as well go after them. Does that make for only a few teams being competitive? Possibly. But what exactly are teams who do value players supposed to do? Wait for someone else to swoop in?