Are the Orioles interested in Justin Smoak?
All it took for the Mariners to acquire Kendrys Morales was Jason Vargas, who was 9-6 with a 4.78 ERA away from Safeco Field last season. It’s hard to say if the Orioles “missed out” given Morales’ injury history, but he could have been a good fit at first base in Baltimore.
One possible fit for the Orioles — as speculated by ESPN’s Buster Olney — is Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak. The 26 year old former first round draft pick was traded from Texas to Seattle in the Cliff Lee deal back in 2010. Smoak hit .209/.304/.382 with 39 home runs and 120 RBI over three seasons with the M’s.
He hasn’t quite turned into the slugger that he was projected to be, which obviously means his price is likely low. Olney says that the Orioles like Smoak’s swing and trying him out in a smaller ballpark may be worth it as long as he doesn’t cost the O’s a big name.
Smoak could be looking to redeem himself and what place to do that than in Baltimore?