So much for the Monkton connection. Pitcher A.J. Burnett has agreed to a one-year deal to pitch for the Philadelphia Phillies and will not be coming to Baltimore for the 2014 season.
Not long after word got out that Burnett intended to pitch this season and not retire, he was immediately linked to the Orioles since he makes his home in Monkton and reportedly had a strong desire to play close to home.
The 37-year-old right-hander had ERAs of 5.26 and 5.15 the last time he was in the American League East, pitching for the Yankees in 2010-11. But he was 26-21 with an ERA of 3.41 over 61 starts for Pittsburgh the last two seasons.
One report had the Orioles “all in” on Burnett and they clearly had strong interest. But reports surfaced last week, including this one by MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko that Burnett wanted to stay in the National League.
So he will, moving across the state from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia as another one-time O’s pitching target goes off the board.
Burnett’s agreement with the Phillies was first reported by CSNPhilly.com. Hayden Balgavy of THV 11 in Arkansas, reported that Burnett agreed to a $16 million contract for the 2014 season.
Morillo signs: The Orioles have signed right-hander Juan Morillo to a minor league contract and he’ll report to minor league camp in Florida. The 30-year-old Morillo is a hard thrower who has had command issues, but has touched 97 and 98 mph with his fastball.
He was originally signed out of the Dominican Republic by Colorado in April 2001 and was on the Futures Game roster in 2005. He went 1-2 with an ERA of 7.88 in nine games in the Mexican League last year and also pitched in Taiwan.
Over his minor league career, he is 40-46 with an ERA of 4.52 with 503 walks and 736 strikeouts in 760 innings. Morillo should have a chance to make the Triple-A Norfolk roster this season.
His signing was first reported by The Sun.