It’s getting to be that time of year again in baseball where most teams know just about where they stand. Some teams already know they will be in the mix in September and some teams are already waving their white flags. The Orioles, as made obvious by their major-league worst 15-38 record, are the latter. This means that they need to start thinking about getting value for the few players that actually are performing before it’s too late. The O’s pitching hasn’t been as big of a problem as the bats have. During their current seven-game losing streak, the O’s have produced a whopping 11 runs. Needless to say, we need help. But we’re not going to get the help they need right away especially with the fact we are the worst team in baseball. Baltimore isn’t the most attractive place for big-name free agents to call home, but we may at least be able to get some nice prospects to help us as we move forward.
The New York Post is reporting that the Mets may be interested in acquiring Kevin Millwood and Ty Wigginton from the O’s. The Mets (27-27) have some holes in their starting rotation and Millwood could give them just the lift they need to put them in the hunt in the NL East. He is 0-5 through his first 11 starts in his first season with the O’s, but it hasn’t been all his fault. He owns a respectable 3.89 ERA with 58 strikeouts to just 17 walks. Millwood is going to be a free agent after this season, so it makes sense for the O’s to try and get some value for him from a team who could utilize him during the second half of the season. He said earlier this week that he wouldn’t be opposed to playing for New York if the opportunity presented itself, and I don’t blame him one bit. The Mets aren’t the most dominant team in the NL, but at least they have a chance to make a run at the division, unlike the O’s.
Wigginton could also be a part of a package deal to the Mets. He has been one of the few bright spots for a slumping O’s offense that hitting just .247 and averaging only 3.34 runs per game. He is currently the team leader in homers (13), RBI (33), runs (23) and OPS (.913). In addition to his success at the plate, he has played almost every infield position as well. What makes Wigginton so appealing to the Mets, besides his versatility, is the status of their current second baseman, Luis Castillo, who just can’t seem to stay healthy. The former Met has played for five teams in seven years, so apparently consistency is not one of his strong points. If the O’s can get some nice prospects in exchange for Millwood and Wigginton, why not send them away? It’s not like the team can do much worse then they are now.
Some other trade bait for the O’s could be Miguel Tejada, Luke Scott and possibly Corey Patterson and Garrett Atkins. I know Atkins is a long shot considering how little he’s produced this year. But if he can get on a little hot streak, the O’s will surely deal him and may be able to get some value in exchange. With one year left in his current contract, Tejada is another guy who will be mentioned in trade talks. Scott isn’t a likely candidate for the trading block, but could be dealt depending on how desperate other teams are to acquire a DH. And you know the O’s won’t have a problem getting rid of him. Patterson is another waiver wire trade candidate depending on his play in the coming weeks.
Like I said before, the O’s aren’t going to acquire that big-name player via trade, based solely on the current status of the organization. But if they’re smart, they’ll get send away the players they can get the most value for in exchange for some top prospects. To the fans, the organization is in quicksand and it feels like they’ll never get out. The best thing for the O’s to do now is load up their farm system and hope they acquire the guys that will get them out of the decade-plus rut.
Submitted by Steve Giles