Multiple reports surfaced earlier today that the Orioles and Braves have held trade talks regarding Japanese pitcher Kenshin Kawakami. MASNsports.com’s Steve Melewski recently got confirmation from an industry source.
Kawakami, 35, is owed $6.67 million, and the Braves would have to eat a large chunk of it. They seem willing to do so.
The Orioles made offers to Kawakami and Koji Uehara two winters ago. Uehara accepted their proposal, of course, while the Braves signed Kawakami, who’s 8-22 with a 4.32 ERA in two seasons.
The Pirates reportedly have cooled on him. I would, too, if I dwelled on his 1-10 record and 5.15 ERA this year.
The Orioles would like to add another veteran starter, and he’d fit toward the back end of it. He’s also close friends with Uehara, who might be more inclined to stay in Baltimore if they’re teammates.
That would be the only reason for me to get even mildly excited by these talks. Kawakami would provide insurance for the rotation if one or more of the young starters falters. And I guess he would qualify as a veteran presence.