Still waiting on a backup catcher

The Orioles had no interest in re-signing Jake Fox and breaking camp for a second time with him making the 25-man roster as the backup catcher to Matt Wieters, but we’ll still cross his name off the list of available free agents after he signed a minor league deal with the Pirates.

As you’ve probably noticed, Wieters is the only catcher listed on the Orioles’ 40-man roster. They need a backup on their bench.

The Astros claimed Craig Tatum off waivers. Triple-A catcher John Hester will be exposed to the Rule 5 draft.

The Orioles contacted Melvin Roman, the agent for Dioner Navarro, once the market opened, but they didn’t make an offer and there’s been no further communication between the two sides. Navarro, once a top prospect in the Yankees’ system, batted .193 with five homers, 17 RBIs and a .600 OPS in 64 games with the Dodgers this season.

Unless something changed in the past few days, the Orioles haven’t reached out to Kelly Shoppach, Josh Bard or Chris Snyder. They didn’t show any interest in Ryan Doumit before he signed with the Twins.

Here’s the free agent list again, courtesy of MLBTradeRumors:

Josh Bard (34)
Ramon Castro (36)
Ramon Hernandez (36) - Type B
Rob Johnson (28)
Jason Kendall (38)
Jose Molina (36) - Type B
Dioner Navarro (28)
Ivan Rodriguez (40)
Kelly Shoppach (32)
Chris Snyder (31) - Type B
J.R. Towles (28)
Jason Varitek (40) - Type B

MLBTradeRumors classifies Jorge Posada as a designated hitter.

On another topic, congratulations to Dylan Bundy for getting that major league contract this summer before the new CBA agreement that no longer will allow draft picks to receive one.

The deadline for signing draft choices has been moved up from Aug. 15 to July 12-18. The specific date is flexible, depending on when the All-Star Game is played.

It’s long overdue.

There was no reason for teams to wait that long to begin serious negotiations with their top picks. The weeks between the draft and the deadline were mostly wasted, with neither side feeling a sense of urgency to initiate contact.

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