Notes on Wieters, Gonzalez, Hendrickson, Morse (and Roberts)

Catcher Matt Wieters was happy to learn today that the Orioles extended the contracts of executive vice president Dan Duquette and manager Buck Showalter through the 2018 season.

“I think it’s great for the franchise to be able to keep two guys around who are two of the main parts of putting together the team last year,” Wieters said. “I think the big thing is we’re able to have two guys working together who have the same goals, and keep them together for an extended period of time. Your relationships are only going to get better from that.”

Showalter has become an extremely popular figure inside the clubhouse.

“First and foremost, he’s a guy who goes to bat for his players,” Wieters said. “He stands behind us and he’s one of the guys in the clubhouse who’s ready to go to war on the field. And on top of that, he’s one of the best baseball minds in the game. And when you’re able to learn from a guy with his knowledge and have him pushing the buttons, you feel pretty comfortable that he’s going to hit the right buttons more times than not.”

* Pitcher Miguel Gonzalez said he still doesn’t know whether he’ll pitch for Mexico in the World Baseball Classic. The rosters will be announced Thursday afternoon.

The Orioles would prefer to keep Gonzalez in camp. They can’t deny him permission to participate in the WBC, but he’s certainly aware of their preference, which could influence him to decline the invitation.

* Left-hander Mark Hendrickson threw at today’s mini-camp at Camden Yards, and he will do so again before its conclusion on Friday.

Showalter said Hendrickson, who hasn’t pitched in the majors since making eight appearances with the Orioles in 2011, looked pretty good during today’s session.

Showalter gave Hendrickson the idea of switching to a sidearm delivery. He believes that Hendrickson, who still lives in York, Pa., is a good guy to have around the team and could one day become a pitching coach.

The Orioles could decide to sign Hendrickson to a minor league contract and invite him to spring training. At this point, it’s only a tryout.

* So much for the Orioles adding Nationals first baseman Michael Morse to the middle of their lineup.

In case you missed it, Morse is headed to the Mariners as part of a three-way trade with the Athletics. The Nats reacquired left-hander A.J. Cole and also received right-hander Blake Treinen and a player to be named later.

* And finally, my favorite tweet of the night, courtesy of Jaime Maggio of Fox Sports West and NFL Network: “Manti Te’o just changed his Facebook status from ‘in a relationship’ to ‘it’s complicated’”

Update: Second baseman Brian Roberts, the longest-tenured Orioles player, referred to today as “a great day in the organization with the extensions of Buck and Dan.”

“They have obviously done an incredible job in a very short period of time changing the culture and the atmosphere of the organization,” Roberts said. “Stability at the top is extremely important and this shows a huge commitment on behalf of the Angelos’, as well as Buck and Dan, to continue to build a winning organization for years to come.”

Hopefully, you tuned into “The Mid-Atlantic Sports Report” today and heard our interview with Showalter. If you missed it, Steve Melewski passed along the quotes in his blog.

“I think if you look at one common denominator in baseball, there is a direct correlation between the manager and general manager,” Showalter said. “It’s a team. It’s something I’m comfortable with, Dan is comfortable with.

“Dan has strengths that I don’t have and I like to think I bring some things. It’s a good complement. I like the idea there will be some continuity and consistency. Everyone is going to know who to blame and I’m OK with that.”

Adam Jones just tweeted the following: “Me signing my 6-year deal with the @Orioles is arguably the smartest thing I’ve done. Not money wise but for the opportunity to play for Show”

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