In terms of possibly adding a starting pitcher via another trade, it appears, at least for now, that the Orioles are taking a wait-and-see approach.
They want to see how their rotation looks with recent acquisition Scott Feldman and the return from the disabled list of Wei-Yin Chen, who got the win Wednesday night.
That was the indication Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette gave when asked yesterday if the club is still pursuing another starter right now via a trade.
“We added Feldman and now we have Chen back to solidify our rotation,” Duquette said. “We should have a stronger foundation in our starting pitching. We are going to need our starting pitching to give us more quality innings in the second half if we are going to accomplish what we want to.
“We are always looking (for starters), but I’d like to see how our team does with Chen and Feldman pitching regularly. We should be able to evaluate that between now and the end of July.
“We’ve had discussions with a number of teams. We are just trying to see who we match up with. Teams like some of our players. We seem to have a little bit more depth to our organization this year.”
How does Duquette weigh trading players that could help in the future, like minor league prospects, for players that can help this year’s team now?
“You have to take a look at what your needs are for your major league team and see where the depth is throughout your organization. That is a good place to start. Sometimes you have, not an excess, but a surplus and that is a good place to start,” he said.
So is it beginning to look more likely that the Orioles will not make any more trades before the deadline at the end of this month?
“I wouldn’t handicap our opportunities to make additional deals. We’re going to be active in the market to try and help our team so we can go back to the playoffs and have another crack at it,” Duquette said.
Meanwhile, I asked Duquette about Triple-A outfielder Henry Urrutia. The 26-year-old from Cuba has now played 14 games with Norfolk and is batting .357 with four doubles, a triple, no homers and six RBIs. He has a 10-game hitting streak going and is 8-for-13 his last three games.
Urrutia is scheduled to play in the Futures Game for the World team on Sunday but will we possibly see him in Baltimore soon?
“The interesting thing about Henry is, in his first press conference, he said, ‘I didn’t sign with the Orioles to play in the minor leagues, I signed to play in the big leagues.’ He made it clear what his intent was. He’s making a case to be an everyday ballplayer in the big leagues, by virtue of his performance,” Duquette said.
“He is certainly coming along and he’s shown a natural ability to hit. Looks to me like he’s an accomplished hitter. He’s playing good defense in the outfield. We’ve played him in right and he’s done well and he’s done well in left. He’s shown a strong, accurate arm.”
So is he ready to help the Orioles now if they call him up?
“Looks to me like he’s making a good case to be an everyday major league player,” Duquette said.