Notes on Wolf and J. Johnson (and McLouth)

I’ve been asked about possible interest in left-hander Randy Wolf. The Orioles weren’t among the teams that watched him work out last week.

Doesn’t sound like there’s any interest.

FOX Sports reported that Wolf auditioned for eight teams as he attempts a comeback from ligament-reconstructive surgery in September 2012. He didn’t pitch this year.

Wolf, 36, went 2-0 with a 5.28 ERA in five games (two starts) with the Orioles after signing as a free agent on Aug. 31, 2012.

Earlier this week, executive vice president Dan Duquette confirmed that the Orioles spoke to Jim Johnson’s representative about a contract extension for the closer, who can become a free agent following the 2014 season.

“We explored that,” Duquette said, “but it didn’t look like there was a fit.”

Duquette wouldn’t offer specifics, but according to multiple industry sources, the Orioles balked at a four-year proposal in the $45-50 million range.

One source said it would have been “Papelbon money,” a reference to closer Jonathan Papelbon, who signed a four-year, $50 million deal with the Phillies in November 2011. Too rich for the Orioles.

Another source said the proposal included a no-trade clause.

(Coincidentally, FOX Sports is now reporting that the Phillies are trying to trade Papelbon.)

The Orioles, uncomfortable with paying Johnson $10-$11 million in arbitration and looking to “reallocate resources,” traded their closer to the Athletics Monday night for infielder Jemile Weeks.

Johnson made $6.5 million this season while going 50-for-59 in save opportunities.

The Orioles remain in the market for a closer. They have plenty of set-up men in the fold with Tommy Hunter and Darren O’Day returning, and the recent acquisitions of Ryan Webb, Brad Brach and Edgmer Escalona.

Note: Another former Oriole is off the board today.

FOX Sports is reporting that outfielder Nate McLouth has agreed to terms on a two-year contract with the Nationals.

The Orioles wanted to bring back McLouth, who signed a one-year, $2 million deal during last year’s Winter Meetings. However, early projections had him getting $10 million over two years.

No further details are available at the moment, but the deal is believed to be in the $10-$11 million range.

Good for him.

McLouth batted .258/.329/.399 with 31 doubles, 12 homers, 36 RBIs and 30 stolen bases.

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