While wondering if Wei-Yin Chen should change the password on his Twitter account to avoid being hacked ...
Is Chen going to be fully motivated to work those three or four innings Saturday night at Single-A Frederick? Either way, he still needs to spring for the postgame spread.
I’d skip the sour grapes.
But seriously, folks, it’s usually not wise to vent on social media. And it was highly unusual for Chen, a pending free agent who figures to get a sweet deal with agent Scott Boras at the controls. So, we’re left to wonder just how much Chen was involved in those tweets.
The Orioles already are preparing for life without Chen in 2016. They’d just like to avoid controversy in 2015 while trying to make a run at another division title.
Chen was a successful international signing by the Orioles, who struck out on Tsuyoshi Wada and Suk-Min Yoon. They never got the healthy versions of the last two. I’m not sure it would have mattered with Yoon, but I’m not a scout.
I think the only drama involving Chen beyond this season is whether the Orioles try to replace him. Kevin Gausman will be slotted into the rotation - no more bullpen and back and forth - but a replacement also could be needed for Bud Norris. That’s also the assumption in the warehouse.
Chen has been sent down in the past while the Orioles manipulate the roster and try to freshen him up. He complained of soreness in his oblique area earlier this season, putting a start in jeopardy, and Showalter detailed how Chen exhibited fatigue during a June 10 start against the Red Sox.
I’ve heard that Chen seemed receptive to the move and understood the reasoning behind it after meeting with Showalter. Chen phoned Boras, who probably has concerns that the “demotion” leaves the impression that his client is injured or fragile.
Boras thinks the Orioles are slowing Chen’s roll. The Orioles think they’re doing Chen - and in turn, his agent - a big favor by making sure the left-hander stays strong for the long haul. And Chen’s ERA may look a lot better without that trip to Toronto.
This whole thing likely will blow over, but it provided a bit of drama on a night when the Orioles went on a home run binge while center fielder Adam Jones tried to let his battered body heal.
Boras also represents Chris Parmelee, whose arrival yesterday was part of the reason why the Orioles optioned Chen. It’s a small, small baseball world.
I’ve written how second baseman Jonathan Schoop will start his injury rehab assignment Friday at Double-A Bowie. He may not be a regular in the lineup as he’s eased back into competition.
“Brady (Anderson) said that when Jon goes out, he may not play every day. He may play a day or two and then sit, play a day and two and then sit,” Showalter said.
At some point, the Orioles will need to figure out how they’re going to make room for Schoop on the 25-man roster. This is going to be a real challenge.
Ryan Flaherty needs to stay as the utility infielder. The Orioles currently have seven outfielders on their roster, though Parmelee and Steve Pearce can play first base. Pearce also showed that he can play second.
“I got it,” Showalter said. “I look at it some. I don’t say those things will just work themselves out. We’ve got quality here and we’re trying to hold the pieces. We like Chris and we want to see what he can do, because I know where they’re going to end up. You might be seeing them in another dugout. There are ways, there are ways. And you’ve seen we’ll explore all the ways to make the pieces fit.
“Players realize it’s kind of what we do and we’ve gotten a good return for it. It’s what’s best for the team. I understand the math of some things, but you can drive yourself crazy if you’re always looking at that. Dan (Duquette) is on top of it.”
The Orioles may need to explore a trade with so many players out of minor league options.
“There’s a lot of time,” Showalter said. “So you’re saying a lot of these things will come up before the trade deadline? It’ll make for ...you guys sorting it out.”