Results tagged ‘ Dan Duquette ’

Baltimore Orioles: Should Dan Duquette be making deals?

Here’s an interesting take regarding Dan Duquette that Baltimore Orioles fans should consider; should he be making trades? As we know, Duquette’s contract is up at the end of the season. Most fans and writers alike agree that odds of Duquette getting a contract extension are slim. However regardless of that, he’s a lame duck (unless or until he gets a new contract).

The trade talk regarding Manny Machado and others has heated up the past couple of weeks. But…do fans really want Duquette making that decision? As a lame duck, one might question the motives behind what he’s doing, or how he’s doing it. Am I suggesting that Duquette would do anything shady or that he operates in a shady manner? Not in the least. But the potential for something unfortunate to happen is there.

Could you imagine what would happen if the Orioles made a trade with say the Los Angeles Dodgers, and then Duquette turned around and signed on in their front office next year? You could have the semblance of collusion, tampering, or something else. You also could have a situation in which someone (Dan Duquette in this instance) becomes a victim of circumstance after doing something very innocent.

Dan Duquette may be a lot of things, but he’s never done anything that would make anyone distrust him. So I don’t think that anything along these lines to occur. All I’m saying is that it could.

And this should be a lesson to John & Lou Angelos. Just to be clear, I respect the fact that Peter Angelos and the Angelos family has not only held people to their contracts, but not let them go unless it was absolutely necessary. People can say what they wish about the Angelos’ management style. But I do respect people who honor their commitments.

Now with that said, the act of allowing a GM to go into the season as a lame duck doesn’t work in sports. It allows for scenario’s like I described above to come into play. Now in fairness, John & Lou Angelos just took over management of the team from their father, Peter. This was back in January. So for all we know the decision to have Duquette serve as a lame duck wasn’t theirs.

What should have happened was that they decided last year whether to extend Duquette or move on. Would that have potentially meant firing him? Yes. But if the goal is to win, the organization is severely handicapped right now on that front. Perhaps next time around things will be different.

Baltimore Orioles: Is ambiguity haunting the Birds?

Dan Duquette isn’t the most open book in the world when he’s talking to the media about the Baltimore Orioles. Neither are any of the coaches, and neither are most of the players. That’s just how the Orioles roll.

But is that to their detriment at times? First off, there’s no GM or team that’s 100% up front about everything that they do; in public, at least. If Duquette announced that he was going after this player or that player, he would give those players’ agents a leg up in negotiations. Or he would give opposing GM’s a leg up in trade talks. So instead we get quotes like we’re going to add starting pitching.

Yet if you listen to fans talk, they’re sickened by what they interpret as a lack of activity. Many of them say that they could even deal with the lack of activity, if not for the appearance that the team doesn’t know what it’s doing or where it’s going. However I would remind fans that in essence they aren’t getting the truth. Nor will they – until deals and transactions start happening.

But again, does this type of ambiguity work against the Orioles? If fans are feeling left out of the process, could they cease to be fans at all? Sure, I suppose that everything is possible. But I somehow don’t see “Johnny from Dundalk” growing up with a Boston Red Sox pennant on his wall, or anything to that affect.

Here’s my point; a lack of action doesn’t mean that Duquette is sitting in the Warehouse twiddling his thumbs. Furthermore, fans should also recognize that very few free agents have come off the board at all at this point. That would indicate to me that the next two weeks are going to see players dropping like flies. You know, with pitchers and catchers reporting to spring training on February 13th and all!

Baltimore Orioles won’t pay international posting fees

The Baltimore Orioles made some waves early in these winter meetings regarding the process by which Shohei Ohtani came to the big leagues. Ohtani of course signed with the Los Angeles Angels, after suggesting that east coast teams weren’t ever really being considered. But Dan Duquette took that to a different level.

On MLB Network Radio, Duquette said that the Orioles didn’t participate in the sweepstakes because they disagree philosophically with the process. By that, he meant the idea of posting a fee (generally in the millions) to simply talk to a player. And while public opinion is swayed in the other direction, I think the Orioles are right.

It sounds an awful lot like extortion to me – the idea of paying a fee just to talk to a player about a contract. That isn’t good for the bottom line, which means it’s not good business. Now with that said, the idea is that other teams are willing to do this – thus the Orioles should be as well. At least that’s what the majority of fans seems to think, at least.

But again, tossing money away is not good for business. That’s the bottom line. People often say the Orioles can afford it and so forth. Maybe they can. But that doesn’t mean that you should do something like that just because. That’s not to say that there isn’t a cost of doing business. Of course there is. But you have to be smart about which costs you’re willing to pay if you have the choice.

On another front, news broke late yesterday that the O’s were talking to the NY Mets about pitcher Matt Harvey. If the Orioles were going to acquire him, it would obviously be a trade. The rumor is that New York is looking for a reliever in return. Perhaps Brach or O’Day? Time will tell, but for what it’s worth I think Harvey is a guy who could help the Orioles. He’s had his issues, but he would be an upgrade in the pitching staff for sure.

Baltimore Orioles open MLB winter meetings

In monitoring social media over the weekend, I saw a lot of folks complaining about the Baltimore Orioles’ lack of moves this off season. I would remind folks that today is only the opening of the annual MLB winter meetings. The off season hasn’t even begun to fight yet in a sense.

Obviously much of that sentiment stems from New York trading for Stanton over the weekend. But as I said yesterday, keep in mind that he was never a player that was in play for the Orioles and Dan Duquette. Not because they wouldn’t shell out or couldn’t afford him, but because they literally don’t need another slugger.

What they need is pitching. And the question is whether or not they’ll pick up some pitching this week. My prediction is that they won’t. And I don’t mean that they won’t do it out of lack of trying. I wouldn’t be surprised if the groundwork for something is laid this week, however.

Deals are often made at the winter meetings. However more realistically deals are begun – and finished later. When you see teas signing a player or perhaps making a trade in January or so, odds are those deals were begun at the winter meetings.

And in a way sometimes it does boil down to being social with other GM’s, or having relationships with other GM’s or executives. I can’t say for sure what Duquette’s relationship is with GM’s who might want to trade pitching or anything like that. But if you don’t believe me, look no further than Jeter trading Stanton to his old team.

Needless to say, it should be an interesting week in Orlando for the Orioles. And it stars today.

Baltimore Orioles: Beware at the winter meetings

The Baltimore Orioles’ contingent, led by Dan Duquette, will head to the annual MLB winter meetings next week. There are a lot of questions surrounding this team, many more so than there probably should be. With a veteran manager and a solid lineup, that is.

Obviously the Orioles stand at a crossroads in the sense that quite a few contracts (including those of the GM and manager) coming off the books following the 2018 season. So there are quite a few moving parts. And quite a few decisions to make.

We know from past experiences that the Orioles will be active in the Rule 5 draft. You can probably bank on it. But again, there are a lot of moving parts. And a lot of outside forces who would like to see the Orioles do certain things.

Namely, other teams would love the opportunity to purchase some of the Orioles’ players. You know, the Machado’s, Schoop’s, Bundy’s, and maybe even the Jones’ of the world. So other GM’s may well be trying to convince Dan Duquette to sell. Even still, perhaps a few will try to convince him to stand pat and that it’s too risky to sell. But too expensive to buy.

Ultimately, every team is out for himself. Another GM may well be offering advice to Duquette and so forth, but in reality he’s trying to come off as such so as to potentially convince Duquette of a plan of attack – which may benefit that other team more than the Orioles. So the Birds have to be careful. Other teams may not be telling them to sell with benevolent reasons.

Ultimately whatever happens, it should be the Orioles’ decision. For their reasons and their reasons only. Because the Orioles are accountable to their fans. Those other teams and GM’s are not.

Baltimore Orioles: Active at the winter meetings?

The Baltimore Orioles’ contingent – led by Dan Duquette – will join the rest of MLB at the 2017 Winter Meetings next month. The week-long event will run from December 10-14th in Orlando, FL, and will feature everyone who’s everyone in the baseball world. It’s also a bit of a dog and pony show in a sense. But everyone’s under one roof.

As we know, deals are often done in terms of free agent signings, trades, etc. at these events. The question is whether or not the O’s will be active or not? Obviously with the likes of Machado and Britton being low-hanging fruit, other teams will be making inquiries.

As most fans know, the Orioles are usually only active on the final day of the winter meetings, when the Rule 5 draft comes along. Whether or not they select a player remains to be seen, although the fact is that Dan Duquette has had good luck in these drafts. He’s also done his homework in the players that the Orioles have ended up taking.

However those are low level moves. Would the O’s consummate a trade (whether Machado or Britton were involved or not)? Or sign a free agent? Keep in mind that even if that doesn’t happen, the groundwork for such a deal might get laid during that time. Just because we don’t see results doesn’t mean something isn’t going to happen. It might, or it might not. We still have the entire winter to figure that out!

Baltimore Orioles: Too much undue pressure on Dan Duquette?

Late last week Baltimore Orioles’ Executuve Vice-President of Baseball Operations Dan Duquette said that he’s tired of being picked in last place each year. Now on one hand, some people would say that in order for that to cease he needs to find a way to make a bigger splash to improve the team. But there are two sides to every story. On the other hand…

…the Orioles have won more games in the regular season since and including 2012 than any other franchise. One way or the other, they’ve found a way to get things done. People might also point out that they haven’t won a title in that span, which is true. But even in the two years they missed the post-season, they were competitive. The O’s haven’t had a losing record since 2011.

Ironically, the national media seemingly has a love affair with one of the Orioles’ division rivals: the Tampa Rays. Admittedly, they’ve also just found a way to get things done – for the most part, that is. However seemingly no matter how many players they lost or how many injuries they had, people would pick them to be in the mix. Just this past season, they were a popular pick to win the AL East. And as we know, they weren’t even close.

I suppose what Duquette’s saying is that this franchise never seems to get the benefit of the doubt. Other teams seemingly do, for whatever reason. While we know this isn’t going to happen, if the 2017 Orioles to a man were exactly the same as the 2016 bunch, would they be horrible? Probably not – odds are they’d be competitive, just as they were last season.

The knock on the O’s is that they don’t have the horses in pitching, which is a glaring weakness. Many people also point to their strikeout totals. However any power-slugging club is going to have strings where they strike out a lot. That’s just part of the deal.

Incidentally, the way you win games in the AL East is by clobbering your opponent. While I also do believe in having guys who simply get on base here and there, AL East games traditionally are 10-7 affairs. So that’s how the Orioles need to build their team, because before anything else they need to focus on the division. If they can adcance past that point, they can start worrying about how to beat teams who focus more on OBP.

Baltiore Orioles: Anyone need a General Manager?!

It was two years ago on the eve of the Winter Meetings that the world found out Toronto wanted the Baltimore Orioles’ Dan Duquette. And when I say the eve of the Winter Meetings, I literally mean “the eve.” As in, the news broke while most of th executives were flying to the meetings on Sunday.

We all remember that unfortunate exchange, and the venom that it spewed. The two Birds’ camps weren’t exactly friendly on the field before, but that didn’t help. The Orioles dug their heels in, making them look like the bad guys for not letting Duquette go. Yet most people seemed to look the other direction when it came to Toronto and how they seemed to violate every unwritten code in the book in terms of talking to someone else’s employee.

And the way that they got away with it of course was that in theory the position for which they wanted Duquette was technically a promotion. As opposed to a VP of Baseball Ops, he would be a President of Operations. However the fact is that Toronto simply structures their front office differently than do the Orioles. In effect, it was the same or a similar job.

But that was two years ago – I don’t anticipate anything like that happening this weekend. But you never know…! And if it did, the Birds would probably react the same way.

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