The Orioles maintain interest in first baseman Carlos Delgado, who is expected to begin playing in Puerto Rico later this week. And they also are keeping an open dialogue with Sam Levinson, who represents third baseman Pedro Feliz.
If the Orioles lose a player in the Rule 5 draft, it could be Double-A Bowie second baseman Miguel Abreu, who is drawing strong interest from the San Diego Padres. At least two other teams, the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers, have scouted him in Puerto Rico.
Abreu is batting .411 in 15 games with Leones de Ponce. He has four doubles, three triples, 10 RBIs and two stolen bases.
Abreu, who also plays all three outfield positions and third base, was named the Top Star of the Eastern League All-Star Game earlier this year. He batted .290 at Bowie with 31 doubles, four homers, 45 RBIs, 55 runs and 25 stolen bases. His 142 hits ranked seventh in the league.
Every club is waiting for the midnight dealine to pass for players to accept or decline arbitration. President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail isn't adverse to surrendering a second-round pick in next year's draft to sign a Type A free agent, so he'll keep careful watch on the closers.