The Orioles have made an offer to Cespedes, according to an industry source. No deal is imminent, however, and the market continues to develop.
Cespedes hit .291 and posted career highs with 35 home runs and 105 RBIs last season for the Tigers and Mets. He won a Gold Glove for playing left field in the American League, despite being traded to the Mets on July 31.
The Orioles also have talked to the representative for free agent outfielder Justin Upton, but I’m told they prefer Cespedes at the moment.
It’s important to note that Cespedes, 30, wouldn’t cost the Orioles a draft pick because he was traded by the Tigers to the Mets during the 2015 season. Upton turned down the Padres’ qualifying offer, which ties him to a draft pick.
The Orioles presently hold the 14th overall pick and are willing to surrender it for the right player.
I’ve also heard that there are some concerns within the organization that Cespedes has played for four teams in four seasons. However, they like him enough to make an offer.
The Orioles aren’t budging on their seven-year offer to Davis that totals $150 million with deferred money. I get the sense that patience is wearing thin on the Orioles side.
One source denied that Davis is “holding the Orioles hostage” and they’re working to acquire another hitter and at least one starting pitcher.
Note: The Orioles have reached agreement with reliever Brad Brach on a $1.25 million contract for 2016, reducing to six the number of arbitration-eligible players.
Brach made $523,000 last season while going 5-3 with a 2.72 ERA in 62 appearances.
FOXSports.com first reported the agreement.