Orioles don’t appear to be making much progress with O’Day

If you were hoping for a quick resolution to Darren O’Day’s pending free agency, you’re in for a huge disappointment.

If you thought the Orioles might be able to re-sign O’Day before he hit the open market, see above.

Pretty much everything is subject to change, but right now the two sides aren’t close to reaching agreement. I was told last night that “all is quiet.”

Darren-O'Day-distressed-black.jpgThat’s not to suggest that the Orioles haven’t been in contact with agent Jeff Borris. They’ve had multiple discussions. However, time is running out and O’Day seems destined to test the market, where he could sift through offers covering four years.

Where he could get closer money.

Where he could move out of the Orioles’ reach.

Plenty of teams need O’Day, whether it’s in the same set-up role or to work the ninth inning. His resume includes both jobs.

The Tigers should covet him. The same is true of the Nationals and Mets. And that’s just scratching the surface.

If you watched the World Series, you can appreciate how much the Mets need a reliever of O’Day’s stature. And like every other team, they can start courting him on Friday, when the Orioles lose their exclusive negotiating rights.

The Orioles won’t make O’Day the $15.8 million qualifying offer and will end up with nothing if he leaves.

I’ve read the comments here and seen the debates over how much the Orioles should spend on a reliever when they have more pressing needs. Would going the extra dollars for O’Day, 33, hurt their chances of, let’s say, re-signing first baseman Chris Davis or finding a No. 1 starter? Do they already have O’Day’s replacement on the roster in right-hander Mychal Givens?

I’m still not comfortable with heaping that much responsibility on Givens. He should break camp with the team next spring, but I’d rather see him used earlier in games unless O’Day isn’t available. I’d rather see O’Day, the leader of the bullpen, remain in the organization unless the cost reaches outrageous proportions.

The Orioles weren’t going to give Andrew Miler four years last winter and they made no attempt to negotiate with his agent. At least they’ve talked to Borris and made it clear to O’Day before the season ended that they wanted to re-sign him. But wanting and doing are two separate things.

O’Day earned $4.25 million this season while going 6-2 with a 1.52 ERA and six saves in 68 appearances. He’s 23-8 with a 1.92 ERA and 0.939 WHIP in 273 appearances over four seasons with the Orioles after being grabbed off waivers on Nov. 2, 2011 - a transaction that probably had the most sarcastic fans wondering when they could purchase World Series tickets.

O’Day hasn’t pitched in a World Series since that day, but he’s been an integral part of two playoff teams, including one that reached the American League Championship Series in 2014. If he’s going to keep pitching for the Orioles, they’ll have to beat out a large group of suitors who are just waiting for him to hit the open market.

All is quiet this week. It won’t stay that way.

Note: The Orioles re-signed left-handers Cesar Cabral and Ashur Tolliver to minor league contracts, according to Baseball America.

Cabral made two appearances with the Orioles, walking one batter and striking out one in a scoreless inning. They designated him for assignment on Sept. 6 after claiming infielder Andy Wilkins off waivers from the Dodgers.

blog comments powered by Disqus