According to various reports, the Orioles will lose out on signing both Victor Victor Mesa and his younger brother, Victor Mesa Jr. Both are now likely to sign with the Miami Marlins and that is expected to become official during a press conference on Monday.
It was fun while it lasted for fans in Birdland to think their club could actually sign the highest-rated international amateur after years of mostly neglecting that market. There is no prize for finishing second here, only frustration for a fan base that has had enough already this year.
If the deciding factors prove to be geography and Miami’s large Cuban community, there is nothing the Orioles could do to overcome that. But it will be very unsettling if the club’s trading of a reported $750,000 of international money to the Phillies was the difference. It almost certainly was not, but the move was questionable then and now.
After compiling an advantage over Miami at one point in the dollars in their pool, the Orioles reportedly dealt $750,000 in pool space to Philly for Jack Zoellner, a 23-year-old minor league first baseman who has played the last two years in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League. This deal happened on Aug. 27. In two seasons in the GCL, Zoellner has hit .240/.358/.401.
Was such a player worth that much pool space? Something doesn’t add up here. If the Orioles felt they could make that deal and still get the Mesas, they miscalculated or failed to foresee Miami adding pool space via trades. I find it hard to believe they could misjudge that. The rules state that teams can add pool space.
The good news is that the Orioles are back pursuing international players. They still have money remaining to make a run at others, including pitcher Sandy Gastón. The bad news is, well, what happened Saturday.
Moving forward, we need to see that the Orioles are in the hunt for other top international amateurs and will do all they can to win some of those battles. We know the Orioles can’t compete with the Yankees and Red Sox in payroll. But fans should expect to see them compete with those clubs everywhere that they can. And the international rules that are currently in place make it such that they can compete with all other teams, including the Yankees and Red Sox. Up next - win some of those battles.
The World Series is set: The Boston Red Sox will host the Los Angeles Dodgers and Manny Machado in the World Series. Game 1 is Tuesday night at Fenway Park. The Dodgers beat Milwaukee 5-1 last night in Game 7 of the National League Championship Series. Now the Dodgers will play in the World Series in back-to-back years for the first time since 1977-78.
Los Angeles won 92 games in the regular season and is looking for its first World Series title since 1988. Boston won 108 games and won the World Series in 2004, 2007 and 2013. Now the Red Sox go for their fourth World Series title in 15 years.
The last two seasons - and in three of the last four years - the World Series has gone the full seven games, including 2017, when Houston beat the Dodgers. But the American League is just 3-5 in the World Series since 2010.
The network should be happy: Had Milwaukee won last night the World Series would have featured a team from TV market No. 9 in Boston against a Milwaukee team in TV market No. 36. But instead FOX gets Los Angeles and TV market No. 2. Big difference. If the Orioles ever make it again, the TV networks would get market No. 26. Click here for a look at major sports cities ranked by TV market.
So what is your take on the O’s losing out on Victor Victor Mesa and who do you like in the World Series?