There’s no secret that the
Now that the Nationals have re-signed first baseman
"I can also see the advantage of trading for a player that's already established in your market ... that a lot of your fans are familiar with," Duquette said at the winter meetings. "So I would see that as an opportunity. ... I would look at it more as a National League trade than a division trade."
Having said that, it might take too much to make a deal. The Nationals' wish list includes young pitching, including a left-handed reliever. The Orioles are willing to offer up some of their young arms not named Bundy or Gausman, but given the interest that Morse will draw -- at least a half-dozen teams have interest -- Washington will have its choice of offers.
The Nats' asking price will likely be high -- it appeared to be too high for the Orioles back in December -- and expect that to rise with the number of suitors because after all, they don't definitively need to deal Morse.
Basically, consider the Nats in the driver's seat.
And watch for the Orioles to be even more cautious in dealing with the Nationals. Morse, who hit 49 homers over the past two seasons, would fill the team's need for a middle-of-the-order power bat nicely. But considering the fact that acquiring Morse could be no more than a one-year rental, the Orioles can't afford to deal a young player to Washington and have to watch him flourish inside the D.C. beltway for years to come.
Morse, who will be 31 on Opening Day, will make $6.75 million in 2013.
-- Also of note, according to a team spokesperson, the Orioles will not raise single-game ticket prices in 2013. Last month, they sent an email to season ticket holders saying those prices would also not increase this season. Single-game tickets will go on sale at FanFest on Jan. 19.