The O's needs seem apparent. They could use upgrades in the rotation and bullpen, and both at second base and catcher. Here's a quick rundown of what the O's may or may not be interested in doing:
- The Orioles may have been "close" to a deal with the Red Sox for Jon Lester yesterday, but as of right now, nothing has happened. Miguel Gonzalez's name was floated as being included in a possible deal for Lester. The Red Sox were also apparently asking for Kevin Gausman or Dylan Bundy.
- Duquette may be dangling Gonzalez as a way to upgrade the starting rotation. As has been noted multiple times on this site, the O's have a collection of decent starters, but if they really want to improve the rotation, they'll have to either part with some of that pitching depth and/or move a pitcher or two to the bullpen. Gonzalez may be the preferred trade chip, but Bud Norris and Wei-Yin Chen could also be options.
- The O's seem to be searching for left-handed relief help. Two options could be Neal Cotts and Oliver Perez. Dan Connolly also brought up Cotts's name. Cotts also pitches for Texas, and the O's have certainly shown an affinity for Rangers players in the past. Apparently the Rangers were recently scouting Tim Berry. Connolly also mentioned the O's interest in Tony Sipp and Andrew Miller.
- It was never apparent how serious the O's were in acquiring Kurt Suzuki from the Twins, but they no longer seem to be interested.
- Emilio Bonifacio was mentioned as a possible O's second base trade target, but such a move doesn't seem like it'll happen, either.
- Other players the O's may have interest in: Dallas Keuchel, Bartolo Colon, Jorge De La Rosa, A.J. Burnett, and Ian Kennedy.
There will assuredly be more rumors throughout the day. I'd be surprised if the O's made a splashy move, primarily because of their reluctance to part with top prospects like Bundy, Gausman, Eduardo Rodriguez, Jonathan Schoop, and the (now-injured) Hunter Harvey. Then again, the Lester trade rumors caught me off guard, even if a deal wasn't all that close to happening.
What should the Orioles do today? Good question. Most of the Camden Depot staff has weighed in the past few weeks with trade ideas and roster tweaks on how to ready the O's roster for a run at the playoffs. Of all the scenarios, I'd say that second base and reliever trade targets are the most realistic. Dealing for Cotts, for example, seems like a move the Orioles would make. And he would help a bit, but that's not a needle-moving acquisition. I'd be fine with a deal for Kennedy or Colon, though, like any deal, that depends on the price. John Lackey seems interesting as well, not only because he's a good pitcher, but also because of a clause in his contract requiring him to earn the MLB minimum salary in 2015 since he missed all of 2012 after having Tommy John surgery.