Offer to Konerko?

Offer to Konerko?
Well, here's your latest rumor: The Orioles have made a "significant" offer to free-agent first baseman Paul Konerko, according to a tweet from former executive Jim Bowden. This wouldn't be a huge surprise, since the Orioles chased Konerko in the winter of 2005 and watched him take less money to re-sign with the Chicago White Sox. They need a first baseman with power. He's a first baseman with power. He's also been viewed as a guy who would rather go someplace else, as he's shown in...
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The long and shortstop of it

The long and shortstop of it
It's with great joy that I can finally proclaim, without fear of contradiction or late signing, that the ship has sailed on Miguel Tejada. Nothing against Tejada, but I wasn't ready for another reunion. How can I miss him if he doesn't leave? He's gone, having reportedly agreed to a one-year, $6.5 million deal with the Giants last night. I didn't think the Orioles would re-sign him to play third base, but at least that temptation has been removed. And all that fuss over Ryan Theriot...
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No. 5 in the Top 9 and some free agent talk

No. 5 in the Top 9 and some free agent talk
Once again, I find myself promoting the MLB Network's Prime 9 program that airs tonight at 8 p.m., but only because of another Orioles connection. The top 9 third basemen in baseball history will be featured, and yes, Brooks Robinson is included. As if he could possibly be omitted. I don't know where he's ranked, but he'll be joined by Mike Schmidt, George Brett and Alex Rodriguez, among others. Rodriguez also made the Top 9 for all-time shortstops (I believe Cal Ripken ranked...
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Allenson's return to Norfolk

Allenson's return to Norfolk
Is Gary Allenson disappointed that he's not part of manager Buck Showalter's coaching staff? "That's an understatement," he says. Allenson was bypassed for the job of third base coach and catching instructor, losing out to former Pirates manager John Russell. He accepted the offer to return to Triple-A Norfolk as manager, assuring that he'll remain in the organization for one more season. Allenson contacted new Pirates manager Clint Hurdle about the possibility of joining his staff,...
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Raffy on HOF ballot

Raffy on HOF ballot
The 2011 Hall of Fame ballot has been released, and former Orioles first baseman Rafael Palmeiro is on it. Working in his favor: Palmeiro, Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Eddie Murray are the only players in baseball history with 3,000 hits and 500 home runs. Aaron, Mays and Murray are in the Hall of Fame. Working against him: That failed test for performance-enhancing drugs in 2005. Palmeiro could have been a first-ballot inductee, but not anymore. He might not make it at all. Your...
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Minor matters

Minor matters
The Orioles might announce their minor league coaching staffs this week. See, I just copied a past entry and inserted the words "minor league." No heavy lifting. It appears that they're waiting to hire a manager at short-season Single-A Aberdeen, with Gary Kendall moving up to Double-A Bowie. Former Baysox manager Brad Komminsk will serve as hitting coach at Triple-A Norfolk, where Gary Allenson will manage again after replacing Juan Samuel as the Orioles' third base coach. Got all...
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Leading you on

Leading you on
Who bats leadoff if Brian Roberts is injured again? It's a question that keeps popping up here, and I've been responding that the Orioles could turn to whichever player is acquired as a backup. Felix Pie also would be an option if his anger management classes let out early enough. It's impossible to know for sure in late November, but the Orioles need to find a utility infielder with lots of experience at second base. Robert Andino will compete for a utility job, and he made a pretty...
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Pie's tantrum on tape

Pie's tantrum on tape
Video of Felix Pie's meltdown in a Dominican Winter League game is surfacing all over the place, so I may as well join the party and post it here, in case you've missed it. Pie was called out at first base on a pickoff and had to be restrained by an Estrellas coach as he attempted to jump into the umpire's chest and take up residence. As tantrum's go, this one is an instant classic. A rumor spread that Pie had attacked the umpire, which isn't quite true. He never made contact. But boy,...
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J.J. Hardy remains SS option for O's

J.J. Hardy remains SS option for O's
Major League Baseball announced today that the Chiba Lotte Marines accepted the Minnesota Twins' bid for middle infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka. Various reports place the Twins' bid at $5 to $5.3 million. The Orioles scouted Nishioka and had some interest, but decided against bidding on him because of the cost. The Twins have 30 days to sign Nishioka. The millions currently invested only give them the right to negotiate with him. The Twins could trade or non-tender shortstop J.J. Hardy, who...
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Reynolds vs. Bartlett

Reynolds vs. Bartlett
The bad part about cooking up a steak for dinner yesterday is I don't have any leftovers this morning. Cold stuffing is one of my favorites. I hope everyone has recovered from their food binge and enjoyed their time with family and friends. If your ears are chilled, it's from sticking your head in the refrigerator one too many times. I've been there, done that. I loved the cranberry stories that were passed along to me yesterday. We could have run a white meat/dark meat poll. Dump enough...
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Thanksgiving appetizers

Thanksgiving appetizers
I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. Please be safe if you're traveling or reaching for another drumstick. Those candles can burn pretty hot. Let me know if, about three-fourths of the way through your meal, someone at your table blurts out, "The cranberry sauce!" and races for the kitchen. I've seen it happen. I'm thankful for my loving and supportive family, a daughter who will forever be my pride and joy - I'm never more proud than when I wake up every morning knowing that...
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Orioles could add another coach

Orioles could add another coach
Major League Baseball places a limit on the number of uniformed coaches that each team can carry, but manager Buck Showalter indicated that the club might add someone who could assist in breaking down any potential language barriers. Showalter wouldn't specify whether this coach would be an eye-in-the-sky, saying that he didn't want to get ahead of himself. "That's one of the things we talked about, a way to do that if there was going to be a need," he said. "You have to make sure...
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Showalter time

Showalter time
The Orioles made manager Buck Showalter available on a conference call earlier this morning. Now he can change his phone number. Showalter conceded that the process of building his staff took much longer than anticipated. It's the elephant in the room. You can't ignore it. At least you don't have to clean up after this one. "I think 'process' is a good word," he said. "It's kind of like when I came in in August. I didn't come in with any preconceived notions. I hadn't really...
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The Koji decision

The Koji decision
I'll begin my morning with my annual rant about how this business has changed for the worse, and how it becomes most evident this time of the year. Multiple reports state that the Yankees made an offer to free-agent Cliff Lee. Someone else tweets that it's not true. One person can't confirm it, but still runs with it. Someone else tweets that it's not true. I remember the days when you had to be 100 percent positive or you couldn't print it. Editors would have climbed your butt like a...
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Orioles won't offer Koji arbitration (and coaches are done)

Orioles won't offer Koji arbitration (and coaches are done)
The Orioles have decided not to offer arbitration to reliever Koji Uehara, and they're leaning toward the same outcome with starter Kevin Millwood. The club can still negotiate with both pitchers and attempt to re-sign them at a later date. Part of this process for the Orioles is figuring out whether a player will decline the offer, which would allow the club to receive a draft pick as compensation. That would be the ideal solution with Millwood, rather than have him accept it and earn more...
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Martinez coming off the board?

Martinez coming off the board?
Reports have surfaced that the Tigers are close to inking catcher/first baseman Victor Martinez to a four-year, $50 million deal. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports tweets - ugh - his confirmation right here. The Orioles, according to Ignacio Serrano of El Nacional, offered Martinez $48 million over four years. I just got confirmation on it from an industry source, but not someone within the organization. Assuming it's true, that's not bad for November. It also demonstrates how badly president of...
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Arbitration deadline looming

Arbitration deadline looming
So, does anyone else think that Brian Billick is the obvious choice to replace Brad Childress in Minnesota? He was the Vikings' offensive coordinator from 1992 to 1998. They set the NFL record for most points scored in one season in '98. He's got a history there. Billick isn't good at developing quarterbacks, but that's fine. The Vikings don't have one. I won 10 games picking against the spread, including last night's Chargers-Broncos tilt. Finally, a decent showing. I also bet that...
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Two former O's in NL MVP Top 10

Two former O's in NL MVP Top 10
Giants first baseman Aubrey Huff, who didn't have a lot of suitors when he filed for free agency last year, placed seventh in the voting for the National League's Most Valuable Player. Reds first baseman Joey Votto received 31 of a possible 32 first-place votes to easily win the award. One writer gave Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols the other first-place vote and chose Votto second. Phillies outfielder Jayson Werth, a first-round draft pick by the Orioles in 1997, finished...
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The impact of Boras on Britton

The impact of Boras on Britton
I'm not expecting much to happen this week because of the Thanksgiving holiday. Not that our heads have been spinning from all the activity up to this point. We might get an announcement on the coaching staff, but how many times can I pull back the football and watch you flip in the air and land on your back before I start to feel the pangs of guilt? The Pirates reportedly will hire Ray Searage as their pitching coach, so the Orioles won't lose Rick Adair to them. The Mets named Terry...
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Make-or-break for Mickolio?

Make-or-break for Mickolio?
It's a sleepy Sunday in the Kubatko household, mainly because I didn't get home from the Maryland-FSU game until 2 a.m. That tailgate traffic leaving the stadium is brutal, and I wasn't even tailgating. Maryland officials wouldn't let me fire up the grill in the press box. I'm not going to reveal my breakout spring training player at this early date, but you have to wonder whether Kam Mickolio is just teasing us with that 0.75 ERA in the Arizona Fall League, which he posted before...
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