O’s would trade Machado in division and will not put timetable on talks

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - The Orioles don’t seem inclined to put a timetable or deadline right now on any trade discussions involving third baseman Manny Machado. They continue to talk with several teams about the three-time All-Star.

If these trade talks drag on for an extended period of time, you have to wonder how much that will impact the club’s planning for the 2018 season.

But as of now, executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette is not inclined to put a timetable on Machado trade talks.

“I don’t think you are in that type of situation,” Duquette said this afternoon during a one-on-one video interview with MASNsports.com. “This is a dynamic market, it’s a fluid market. Things are moving all the time. I think it’s important to communicate with people and let them know where we’re at and they do the same for us.

“We need to decide how we are going to configure our ballclub. But right now, we’re assessing what the market is. We’ve been talking to a number of teams and we’re trying to see what the market is for a number of our players. See if we match and see if we can make a trade to help the ballclub. We are getting closer to assessing what the value is.”

The Orioles also are not ruling any team in talks involving Machado - and, yes, that includes New York and Boston. Duquette said they’d trade Machado to any club.

Manny Machado throw white.png“I think it is important that we look at the entire market and see where that brings us. Then we can make an intelligent choice for the club,” Duquette said.

Here are other topics discussed during today’s interview:

Duquette said the club has made offers to free agent pitchers: “We’ve made offers to several pitchers that are free agents. We haven’t been able to close any of them, obviously, but our guys are working every day on that. We’ve signed some depth pitching, now we need to add some other pitching to our major league staff.

“We have made several offers, but the market we see for those pitchers in Baltimore, it hasn’t met with the expectations and what is happening in the market outside of Baltimore.”

Was there any progress today on the effort to add pitchers?: “Well, we met with a couple of teams and discussed a couple of players in potential trades, and we also are looking at some free agent signings we might be able to advance on. Hopefully, we are a little closer to our next signing.”

How has the free agent market been for pitchers?: “The interesting thing about this market is clubs are signing relief pitchers - not necessarily closers, either - and they are giving them a lot of money. Generally, the money will go to the starting pitchers and then the money will go the closers. But in this market, the money seems to be flowing to the middle relievers, which is really stunning and a new development. The amount of money going to relievers is really a lot more than the industry has paid in the past for those jobs.”

Could that impact the market for starting pitchers?: “It could. We’ll have to wait and see how that goes.”

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