Orioles sign 19 players and renew Machado

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles announced today that they signed 19 of their pre-arbitration players to 2014 contracts and renewed third baseman Manny Machado.

Players signed today include pitchers Brad Brach, Kevin Gausman, Miguel Gonzalez, Steve Johnson, Josh Stinson, Chris Tillman, Mike Belfiore, Tim Berry, Zach Britton and T.J. McFarland; catchers Steve Clevenger, Johnny Monell and Michael Ohlman; infielders Michael Almanzar, Ryan Flaherty, Johnathan Schoop and Jemile Weeks; and outfielders David Lough and Henry Urrutia.

Machado was renewed at $519,000 after completing his first full season in the majors and also received a $100,000 bonus for winning the Platinum Glove. The sides couldn't reach agreement on a contract, which led to the renewal - a common practice with players who have limited service time.

In the past few years, the Orioles have renewed right fielder Nick Markakis and catcher Matt Wieters. Players wield more power once they reach arbitration years and free agency.

Machado expressed disappointment in the system while meeting with reporters today, but added that he would focus on being the best player he can be and not let the contract become a distraction. He also said that he never expected to receive a big raise despite hitting .283/.314/.432 with 51 doubles, three triples, 14 homers and 71 RBIs in 156 games.

Executive vice president Dan Duquette said a long-term extension for Machado is "something we can revisit at any time." He also said the club held talks last year, but couldn't reach an agreement.

The Orioles haven't made progress on extensions for J.J. Hardy, Chris Davis or Wieters because "we're focused on putting the team together," Duquette said. Hardy confirmed that there have been no talks with his agent.

Asked if the Orioles are still actively involved in negotiations with free agent pitcher Ervin Santana, Duquette said, "The club is always looking to add pitching depth."

Lots more to come.

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