The Orioles are not in position to pull off a Gonzalez-type deal

Whenever a team acquires a player in the offseason, some fans invariably asks the question, “Why didn’t the Orioles do that?” Some have asked that of the Nationals’ trade for pitcher Gio Gonzalez.

The Nationals gave up four prospects - three of their top nine as rated by Baseball America - to get the 26-year-old lefty. It was a deal where both sides got what they sought and the Nationals clearly feel they can contend in 2012 and gave up some potential key pieces of their future to go for it now.

But the Orioles are in no position now to trade four prospects for one player. With the club seemingly dead set against dealing their top prospects, they simply could not have come close to putting together a package for Gonzalez and it made no sense for the Orioles to even get involved on this one.

Boston reportedly backed out on talks for Gonzalez because the price was high. With the Padres’ recent trade of Mat Latos to the Reds, we’ve now seen young pitchers dealt for four players each twice in about a week.

The Orioles can only hope their young pitching continues to develop and one day they may have a surplus and could deal a hurler for a package of four players.

You just never know with prospects. Some become stars, but many never make it at all. Washington took a big gamble in moving four young players. It was a bold move. We won’t know for several years, though, whether it was a good move.

Meanwhile, if reports are accurate that the Yankees bid less than $20 million for Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish, I have to wonder this: What the heck where they thinking?

The Yankees had to know that bid would not come close. Did they make a bid for PR purposes? What is going on in New York, where the Yankees have apparently not been in on the top free agents this year? Did they forget they have the biggest checkbook?

I can only imagine the fans’ reaction if the Orioles had made such a ridiculously low bid for Darvish. Texas slightly topped the New Yorkers at $51.7 million.

It’s been a strange winter for the Red Sox and Yankees. Their names, as always, get linked to practically every player, but so far, they have been pretty quiet.

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