I've provided false hope in the past, but I'm almost certain that the Orioles will announce their minor league managers and coaching staffs this week. They also should confirm a few hires, including Rick Peterson as pitching coordinator (title pending) and Chris Correnti as part of their athletic training staff.
No sense dragging it into the third week of January.
Pitchers and catchers report to spring training Feb. 18. The roster needs more work. Maybe not this week, but it's coming.
Another national reporter tweeted last night that Edwin Jackson makes sense for the Orioles. That's the popular opinion. He's the best starter available on the market and executive vice president Dan Duquette wants to add at least one more.
We can debate whether Jackson, who's 60-60 with a 4.46 ERA and 1.476 WHIP in nine major league seasons, qualifies as a No. 1, but he'd definitely slot into the front end of the rotation.
As I've written, Duquette normally will not go beyond three years for a free-agent pitcher. He made that point clear during his first days in the front office. Jackson would have to be the exception.
Agent Scott Boras is in no rush to find a team for Jackson. Maybe he's waiting for the Cubs to trade Matt Garza, at which point the market for Jackson will expand. This isn't Boras' first rodeo. He knows exactly what he's doing.
MLBTradeRumors rated Jackson No. 6 among the Top 50 free agents, and he's still on the board. So is Prince Fielder (No. 2), another Boras client.
I wonder if Boras would offer a discount to a team willing to sign both players? Probably not.
The Orioles have a legitimate shot at Jackson if they'll give him four years - he's not likely to get five from anyone - at an annual return similar to what Mark Burhrle and C.J. Wilson are taking home. Buehrle signed a four-year, $58 million deal with the Marlins. The Angels handed Wilson a contract for five years and $77.5 million.
Maybe you'd feel better about a rotation that consisted of Jackson, Jeremy Guthrie, Tommy Hunter, Jake Arrieta and Zach Britton. Maybe you'd feel worse that the Orioles were paying $8.15 million for Tsuyoshi Wada to pitch in relief. Maybe you want Jackson in the fold so the Orioles can trade Guthrie. Maybe you want a second left-hander in the rotation. Maybe you're expecting Brian Matusz to blow away the competition in spring training and eliminate the need for another starter.
The only way that Jackson figures to work the strike zone for the Orioles is if Duquette moves outside of his comfort zone.
FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal tweeted that the Orioles are close to reaching an agreement with Taiwanese left-hander Chen Wei-Yin on a multi-year deal.
Chen, 26, was 8-10 with a 2.68 ERA in 25 games (24 starts) this year for the Chunichi Dragons of the Nippon Professional Baseball League.
Here's more on Chen.