Because You Asked - Revenge of the Fallen

It’s time to release another sequel to “Because You Asked,” where I post the most repeated questions sent to my blog and Twitter account.

You ask, I answer. You ask again, I answer again. It’s our own little SOR dance, only without the decorations and punch bowl. And it’s OK if the boys stand on one side of the gym and the girls on the other side.

Slow dancing to Journey is optional.

Wow, I’m old.

Anyway, let’s get started.

Do you think that Jonathan Schoop will play second base for the Orioles in 2013?
Not on opening day, but it’s possible later in the summer. The Orioles will assign him to Double-A Bowie or Triple-A Norfolk. The rest is up to him, and whether there’s a need for a replacement at second base. The Orioles could sign a free agent or make a trade. Brian Roberts could be healthy on opening day. And Ryan Flaherty could get another chance if he isn’t optioned to Norfolk.

Ryan Flaherty can be optioned?
Yes. His former Rule 5 status no longer forces the Orioles to keep him on the major league roster all season.

What do you think the Orioles are willing to pay Mark Reynolds?
Less than $9-11 million per year. Otherwise, they would have picked up the option or already decided to tender him a contract and risk going to arbitration.

Would you keep Reynolds?
Absolutely. Though it’s not my money, I think $11 million is excessive. But I wouldn’t risk letting him test the free-agent market.

What about signing Adam LaRoche for first base?
He turned down the Orioles two winters ago when they offered two years and a vesting option, and he’s going to want more years and money now after hitting a career-high 33 home runs, driving in 100 runs for only the second time and winning his first Gold Glove. Better chance that he stays with the Nationals or signs with the Red Sox.

Have you heard if there’s any interest in Marco Scutaro?
I have not. Doesn’t mean he’s not on their radar, but I’m not aware of it. If I knew, I would most certainly write it.

Did you really tweet that the ending of “Hoosiers” gets you every time?
I’m not afraid to show my sensitive side.

What’s the latest on Nolan Reimold?
Nothing has changed. His neck isn’t fully healed and he’s rehabbing back home. The last I heard, he was having a gym built in his house. And he still expects to be full-go in spring training. I have no idea what he ate for lunch. Sorry.

Why don’t the Orioles just release Brian Roberts?
Because they’re going to owe him $10 million no matter what happens to him. May as well check him out in spring training and try to determine whether he can regain his job at second base and his spot atop the order. There’s no denying that Roberts makes the Orioles a better team when he’s healthy. It’s just been a while.

Will we see a reunion between the Orioles and Matt Lindstrom?
Anything is possible - well, except for a reunion between the Orioles and Kevin Gregg - but he would have to come at a discount and the Orioles would have to make room for him. They weren’t going to pick up his $4 million option if they hadn’t traded him. Let’s assume that Jim Johnson, Pedro Strop, Luis Ayala, Darren O’Day and Troy Patton are definitely coming back in 2013. Brian Matusz could be the second lefty. Tommy Hunter could stay in the bullpen. Jake Arrieta, Zach Britton and Steve Johnson are long-relief possibilities if they don’t crack the rotation, though it’s more likely that they would be optioned to Norfolk. Chris Tillman is out of options and will have to make the team or be exposed to waivers. A healthy Stu Pomeranz will continue to intrigue the Orioles. A healthy Tsuyoshi Wada could be a lefty in the ‘pen if there’s no room in the rotation. And executive vice president Dan Duquette figures to sign a few relievers as minor league free agents who will receive spring training invites.

Did you see that the Orioles’ Facebook page posted a photo showing that J.J. Hardy won a Gold Glove?
This is an old one, but yes, I had lots of people pointing it out to me while I followed the rules and waited for the announcement on ESPN2. So much for an embargo. Someone obviously jumped the gun. No repercussions, I’m sure. Meanwhile, I would have been strung up on the Dempsey’s sign on the warehouse and pelted with media guides. And I’m talking about the spiral bound ones, which really hurt.

Why don’t the Orioles sign Jeremy Guthrie?
That ship has sailed. And I know what you’re thinking, but this isn’t the S.S. Tejada. The Orioles have no interest in a reunion with Guthrie. They’ve moved on, and so should you. speculates that he’ll sign with the Pirates, which would allow the Orioles to exchange pleasantries in Bradenton.

What did you do for Halloween?
Sat on my front step, sipped a cocktail, smoked a cigar and handed out candy. Yeah, I’m that guy in the neighborhood.

Who will take Rick Peterson’s place if the Red Sox hire him as pitching coach?
I don’t even know whether the Orioles would keep Peterson’s title of director of pitching development. Duquette won’t comment as long as Peterson remains in the organization. It’s a specialized role that might exist only for Peterson. Will have to wait.

Why is Miguel Gonzalez using Luis Ayala’s glove?
Man, that’s really an old one. I need to do this more often. Ayala let him have it as a friendly gesture. Said something about how it’s common in Mexico.

Why is Brian Matusz using Brady Anderson’s glove?
Not funny.

How about moving Manny Machado to shortstop and putting J.J. Hardy at third base?
I don’t have that kind of power in the organization. And Hardy just won a Gold Glove at shortstop because he’s really, really good at that position. Machado looks really, really good at third base. Why fix what ain’t broken?

How about moving Manny Machado to shortstop and putting J.J. Hardy at second base?
See above.

Any updates on Reimold since you started writing this blog entry?
Still nothing new.

What about now?
Stop it.

Do you see the Orioles making a run at Zack Greinke?
Only if he steals something from their clubhouse.

Let me try this again. Why won’t the Orioles make a run at Zack Greinke?
They don’t sign pitchers for more than three years. Duquette already indicated that they won’t spend big in free agency. There’s just no match here.

Whatever happened to the Cuban outfielder that the Orioles’ signed?
In keeping with our movie theme, I’ll call this one “Regarding Henry (Urrutia)” I’ll now pause here to allow your admiration for me to build. OK, Urrutia is still in Haiti while awaiting his visa, but the Orioles remain hopeful that he’ll soon relocate to Sarasota. And no, I haven’t heard whether his car is already there.

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