Dan Duquette is off to underwhelming start in first full off-season as el Capitan Meisterschaftheld of Equipe de Baltimore!
So far nobody could reasonably ask for more from somewhat quirky, still new and possibly lucky general manager — oh, sorry, EVP of Operaciones de Beisbol.
But he nevertheless reminds Wayward O of some parsimonious billionaire from movies who dumpster dives for parts rather than take his Bentley into dealership for new water pump.
Latest on-the-cheap spare? Alexi Casilla — Team’s fifth second baseman.
Years ago, back around 2003 maybe, owner of Blog of Team used to lament Team’s inability to choose between two second basemen. Now there are five guys in mix if you count our very rich, very reverent and very contract-focused friend Brian Roberts and also count Omar Quintanilla.
A quick look at Casilla and you see why Minnesota tired of him after five middling years in which he stole a few bases but did little else to rouse one’s baseball soul either with bat or in field.
All of it suggests Team really still thinks Roberts has decent shot to return and play out final year of contract.
Blog digresses here, but wouldn’t it be great if he did? Blog can see the headlines now: “After Years in Wilderness, Roberts Returns With Biblical Vengeance.” Maybe — it’s not beyond realm of the possible — B-Rob will even sign a new contract. Somewhere.
It’s all kind of too bad for Ryan Flaherty, probably the most intriguing of the second base bunch, and for the ever-so-human Robert Andino, who just is one of Blog’s favorites for Aubrey Huff-like reasons.
In picking scraps from edges of baseball’s steam table, at least Duquette hasn’t, so far, given Fans of Team indigestion by seriously considering Nick Swisher, one of the game’s great overrated players and a grinning fool who simply cannot, MUST NOT be part of Team’s future for any reason.
Blog simply cannot overstate this point: Bringing Swisher on (and handing draft picks to Yankees as a result) would put serious dent in Blog’s ability to care about Team. And Blog is not alone.
Is this thing on? Don’t you do it, Dan!
Concept of bringing another former Team nemesis and Moneyball hero, Kevin Youkilis, to Baltimore is far more appetizing, relatively speaking, than concept of bringing in Swisher.
Youks over the years has delivered many cases of heartburn to Orioles fans, who incredulously watched his idiotic batting stance, marveling at how it was possible for anyone to hit the ball while gyrating like a wind-up toy — and then invariably cursed when he would burn Team with key hit.
But baseball more recently been a very humbling game for Youk.
Knowing his competitive nature, Blog will say he’s likely to come back next year and produce even if it’s in a limited role.
If Orioles can’t manage to keep Mark Reynolds for the right price — and if they feel need to bring in a right-handed first baseman to spell Chris Davis — Youks would be a far less drecky move than the aforementioned Swisher.
Many people have said Swisher is kind of guy who “you love if he’s on your Team.” No. He’s not that kind of guy. Youks, however, is that kind of guy.
At any rate, nobody can accuse Duquette of rushing in where Angels fear to tread. His hang-back, pick-up-the-scraps approach has left Team with options to make moves at first base, left field and — arguably most importantly — in starting rotation.
So far, so good (or something) for our cash hoarding head strategist.