As I pack up my laptop... (w/ Koji update)

The Orioles are still trying to work out a trade for Twins shortstop J.J. Hardy.There’s also a feeling here that the Cardinals could move shortstop Brendan Ryan later tonight.

In case you hadn’t heard, the Orioles need a shortstop.

The Padres no longer are in the running for Ryan after acquiring Jason Bartlett from the Rays earlier today. The Orioles and Pirates could end up splitting the remaining candidates.

President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail told reporters around 6 p.m. that he didn’t expect any news to break later tonight. He used the word “doubtful,” which we interpreted to mean “absolutely not.”

Things can change with one phone call or knock on his door. I’m heading back to my hotel and will let you know if the Orioles make their second move of the winter meetings.

Otherwise, I’ll see you at the Rule 5 draft at 9 a.m.

Update: I just walked into my room after a long wait for a cab and a longer stroll to my building from the hotel lobby when my colleague, Steve Melewski, called to inform me of The Sun’s report that Koji Uehara has signed a one-year deal with a vesting option. You can jump over to his blog for statistical reminders of Uehara’s pinpoint control.

This is a great move for the Orioles, who still could use a few more bullpen arms. And did we ever imagine back in spring training, after Uehara’s latest hamstring injury, that we’d be celebrating his return?

That’s a trade and a re-signing in Orlando. Bring on the signing so we can complete the Triple Crown.

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