Interest in Ortiz?

In case you thought executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette has spent the entire day comparing cartoon birds and making sure the script on the road jerseys is no longer tapered, he’s been sitting down with agents and rival executives at the GM meetings in Milwaukee.

And according to one report, he’s got an appointment tonight with agent Fern Cuza.

The Boston Globe’s Pete Abraham tweeted that Duquette is meeting with Cuza, who represents free agent David Ortiz. Abraham speculated that the Orioles have interest in the veteran designated hitter.

The Red Sox also are meeting with Cuza.

The Orioles want a big bat for the middle of their lineup, and Ortiz won his fifth Silver Slugger Award after batting .309 with 40 doubles, 29 homers, 96 RBIs and a .953 OPS.

Pitching remains the No. 1 priority, and the Orioles also need an infielder who could play second base if Brian Roberts is unavailable, or serve in a utility role if Robert Andino is named the starter. But they also could insert a bat at DH, left field or a corner infield position.

Ortiz made $12.5 million this season. He turns 36 on Friday.

Yes, the Orioles would need to keep Ortiz and Kevin Gregg on opposite sides of the clubhouse. I’m sure Duquette is aware of their history.

It’s worth noting that Ortiz signed with the Red Sox in 2003, one year after they fired Duquette. The two men don’t have a history.

By the way, this is mostly speculation. I don’t have Cuza’s full client list - though I know he represents Vladimir Guerrero - but it’s the hot stove season and that’s what we do.

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