Meanwhile, in the news...(updated)

So a funny thing happened while I was attending a holiday party at the warehouse - about 15 people just rushed over to tell me that reliever Mike Gonzalez apparently has agreed to a two-year deal with the Orioles.

I haven't gotten confirmation from a team official, but enough people are talking about it - especially The Sun's Jeff Zrebiec - that we'll assume it's true.

I left messages - text and voice - for president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail. He's not likely to address the subject before Gonzalez passes a physical. That's standard procedure by the Orioles.

It's been a slow off-season compared to many teams, but the Orioles acquired a starter for the top of their rotation and apparently filled the vacancy at closer, though we'll find out later whether the competition remains open. The assumption is that Gonzalez would have first crack at the job.

Gonzalez is represented by Scott Boras, so any lingering concerns that the Orioles are hesitant to deal with him should be put to rest.

Update: Oh yeah, and third baseman Garrett Atkins, too, according to The Sun's "industry sources."

Both deals, of course, are pending physicals, but the Orioles are making a flurry of moves before the Christmas break.

Funny how Pedro Feliz was at the top of their third base wish list. Then I read Joe Crede had moved ahead of the pack. Then they end up with Atkins.

The market must be playing out.

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