More on Burnett

If nothing else, yesterday’s news that A.J. Burnett wanted to pitch in 2014 generated a spirited debate among Orioles fans.

The club should make an aggressive play for him. The club should avoid him and his inflated ERAs during his last two seasons with the Yankees, and focus on Bronson Arroyo, Ervin Santana or Ubaldo Jimenez.

Choose a side.

I’ll gladly take Burnett and pair him with Chris Tillman. He’s an upgrade for the rotation. He’s a proven 200-innings guy with little risk.

The Orioles won’t have to make a big financial commitment to him. They won’t have to give up their first-round pick in the upcoming draft. And they can play the “Monkton-Baltimore” card.

In the last six seasons, Burnett has made 34, 33, 33, 32, 31 and 30 starts. How many current pitchers on the Orioles’ 40-man roster can match that streak?

Anyone who thinks it’s obvious that the Orioles would have interest in Burnett based simply on their desire to sign a starting pitcher needs to peruse the list of free agents. The Orioles will pass on the majority of them.

Burnett is a special case, for the reasons I’ve stated.

This isn’t the first time that Burnett has been linked to the Orioles. Pick a year.

Back in 2005, they nearly traded outfielder Larry Bigbie and pitcher Hayden Penn to the Marlins for Burnett and third baseman Mike Lowell. The deal was so close to being finalized, then-manager Lee Mazzilli almost contacted Lowell with the news. But the deal fell apart because of concerns over Lowell’s health and his contract.

The Orioles, from what I’ve been told, wanted another $1 million from the Marlins. They were rejected.

Relievers Jorge Julio and Steve Kline, and Marlins minor league outfielder Eric Reed, also were involved in various proposals.

Maybe it’s Burnett’s destiny to wear an Orioles uniform.

A report surfaced on yesterday that Jimenez may be willing to settle for a three-year deal, making the Orioles one of the favorites to sign him. However, they’d still prefer to hold onto that first-round pick.

Is that wise?

I’m going to leave you with a list of Orioles first-round selections.

2013 Hunter Harvey RHP
2012 Kevin Gausman RHP
2011 Dylan Bundy RHP
2010 Manny Machado SS
2009 Matthew Hobgood RHP
2008 Brian Matusz LHP
2007 Matt Wieters C
2006 William Rowell 3B
2005 Brandon Snyder C
2004 Wade Townsend RHP
2003 Nick Markakis LHP/OF
2002 Adam Loewen LHP
2001 Chris Smith LHP
2001 Mike Fontenot 2B
2000 Beau Hale RHP
1999 Mike Paradis RHP
1999 Richard Stahl LHP
1999 Larry Bigbie OF
1999 Keith Reed OF
1998 Rick Elder OF
1997 Darnell McDonald OF
1997 Jayson Werth C
1995 Alvie Shepherd RHP
1993 Jay Powell RHP
1992 Jeffrey Hammonds OF
1991 Mark Smith OF
1990 Michael Mussina RHP
1989 Ben McDonald RHP
1988 Gregg Olson RHP
1987 Chris Myers LHP
1987 Brad DuVall RHP
1984 John Hoover RHP
1983 Wayne Wilson RHP
1982 Joe Kucharski RHP
1980 Jeff Williams OF
1978 Robert Boyce 3B
1977 Drungo Hazewood OF
1976 Dallas Williams OF
1975 Dave Ford RHP
1974 Rich Dauer 3B
1973 Mike Parrott RHP
1972 Ken Thomas C
1971 Randy Stein RHP
1970 James West C
1969 Don Hood LHP
1968 Junior Kennedy SS
1967 Bobby Grich SS
1966 Ted Parks SS
1965 Scott McDonald RHP

Anyone need a hug?

Shameless plug alert: I’m scheduled to talk Orioles on MLB Network with Greg Amsinger and Mitch Williams around 9:45 a.m.

It’s a phoner, which simplifies the whole wardrobe issue.

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