As he approaches the final game today in his finest season as a professional, Orioles third baseman Manny Machado said he’s open to discussing a contract extension if the team wants to resume a dialogue.
The sides spoke in the past without coming close to an agreement. Maybe it’s time to try again with Machado now eligible for arbitration and his production substantially on the rise.
Machado is the only major league player to appear in every game this season, and he’s only the second in Orioles history to hit 30 home runs and steal 20 bases in the same season. He’s batting .288/.360/.506 with 30 doubles, 35 home runs, 86 RBIs, 101 runs scored and 20 steals.
“Last time we spoke was a couple years ago and the topic hasn’t come up, but I love this organization,” Machado said. “I’d definitely love to stay here, so yeah, we could talk this offseason. It would be great. And if we get something done it will be much better. We’ll just see what happens.
“I know last time we talked we kind of left it like that, just to prove that I could play, if I was going to be able to play again, and I’ve shown it this year. We’ll see what comes up.”
The two knee surgeries no longer are a topic of conversation. Machado’s play has made them seem irrelevant.
The Orioles have six pending free agents and could enter 2016 without a chunk of their nucleus, including first baseman Chris Davis, catcher Matt Wieters, starter Wei-Yin Chen and set-up man Darren O’Day. Machado said it won’t influence his desire to remain an Oriole beyond his current contract.
“It doesn’t matter,” he said. “This is the organization I came up with, this is the organization I want to be with. I have no doubt in my mind that we’re going to get back to where we need to be. We’ve got to make some moves, get some people, sign some people back. Hopefully, we sign Davis back.
“This organization, I think we’re on the right path and I don’t think we’re going to go back to where we were. As long as we have the guys around here like Adam (Jones) and me and the guys we have next to us, J.J. (Hardy).
“We want to win and we’re not going to go back to being a losing team or a losing organization. I hope they do everything in their power to get the pieces that we need to have in this organization. For my part, this is the only organization I know. This is the organization I love, this is the organization I want to be with. If the situation comes up and we talk about it, yeah, we’ll sit down and talk. I’d definitely love to stay here.”