The clock is winding down to Friday’s deadline to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players, and the
The largest looming decision is whether the Orioles will tender a contract to first baseman
While the Orioles have yet to make an official decision regarding Reynolds, it has become increasingly clear that the Orioles will non-tender Reynolds and allow him to become a free agent.
The sense is that the club still holds interest in Reynolds, but is willing to allow the 29-year-old to test the free-agent market with hopes they could eventually sign him for less.
The Orioles declined Reynolds' $11 million club option for 2013 last month and paid him a $500,000 buyout.
Reynolds, who flourished defensively after he moved to first base in May, slumped early in the season before hitting 15 of his 23 homers in the final two months of the season. Reynolds also tied a club record with seven homers against the
But it's become clear that while the Orioles like Reynolds, his toughness and the way he fits in the clubhouse, they're not willing to risk the hefty raise he could receive through arbitration.
The Orioles’ payroll will already increase mightily because several players will receive significant raises through the arbitration process, including catcher
Among their 14 arbitration-eligible players, outfielder
However, don’t underestimate the allure that playoff bonuses hold for non-players such as coaches (and athletic trainers, etc). One well-respected coach a couple years ago admitted off the record that he chose another team over the Orioles because, though the salaries were somewhat similar, there was a much better chance he could get a playoff bonus with the other team. When you consider that the
So now that the Orioles have a coaching position open (at third base), candidates will notice that they are a playoff team with potential postseason shares in the offing.
-- Right-hander Brandon Erbe has signed a minor league deal with the
But consistent injuries quashed that dream. Erbe, who turns 25 next month, got as far as Triple-A Norfolk in 2010, but couldn't stay healthy long enough to take the next step.
Erbe was taken in the third round of the 2005 amateur draft, the first under former amateur scouting director Joe Jordan. That one was packed with plenty of guys that the organization was excited about including top pick
Perhaps the best pick of that draft was 16th rounder
-- The Orioles have purchased the minor league contracts of two independent league relievers. Left-handed reliever Logan Mahon, who played for the Gateway Grizzlies of the
Mahon was 2-1 with a 2.52 ERA with 30 hits and 25 strikeouts in 35 2/3 relief innings. He was a 22nd-round pick by the
Under Duquette, the Orioles have shown they're willing to tap the independent leagues for players. This season, outfielder Lew Ford and left-hander Rich Rundles both began the season year in the independent Atlantic League before signing minor league deals. Ford finished the season with the Orioles