While I focused on Matt Wieters‘ future this morning, MASNSports.com’s Roch Kubatko pondered what the Orioles should do with left fielder Nate McLouth. In short, the Orioles revitalized the Dash’s career by signing him to a minor league deal on June 5 of last season, just five days after being released by Pittsburgh. As everyone in Baltimore knows, he played an important role in the Orioles second half improvement and signed a club friendly one-year, $2 million deal last fall.
So what should the O’s do with McLouth? Kubatko says he spoke with someone in the organization thinks the Orioles should begin extension talks. McLouth been a valuable asset atop the Orioles lineup and has greatly improved their defense in the outfield.
The Birds left fielder told Kubatko that he hasn’t thought much about his future past this season, but added something I found to be particularly interesting.
“This is a desirable destination for free agents. It really is,” McLouth said. “It’s a great ballpark. Just a great team to play for. Besides being a good team now, it’s a good feeling you get around here.”
For years we’ve heard about players not wanting to come to Baltimore because of the state of the organization or pitchers pitching in a small stadium. The Orioles were forced to build from within. Now, after a year and a half of winning, an upcoming free agent says the O’s are enticing.
The team is finally trending in the right direction, their led by one of the game’s best managers and play in front of a fan base that is excited to have a contender back at Camden Yards.
It didn’t take the Orioles long to completely change how they were viewed.