Monday, July 30, 2007

Spotlight on MacPhail

Tomorrow marks the 2007 season trade deadline, but as Oriole fans, let's not kid ourselves. Nothing major is going to happen if anything happens at all.

Mark Teixeira has all ready been traded to the Braves, where he could quite possibly finish his career. Players like Bedard and Roberts, who could get back a huge return, won't be traded either.

But that doesn't mean that this trade deadline can't still be effective.

If Andy MacPhail can find someone to take Steve Trachsel and Jay Payton off our hands, then he needs to pull the trigger, regardless of the players we get back. We simply need these players gone because they are taking up valuable roster spots that players like Garrett Olson and Jon Knott can fill for a fraction of the cost.

Olson, who had a short stint with the O's earlier this season, is a potential starter who needs experience. Plus he is a LHP, which would go great with Bedard, Loewen and Burres as 2008 rotation candidates. Might as well see what the kid's got now, rather than later.

Then there is Jon Knott, the much-ballyhooed MiL slugger who has had his cup off coffee twice with the Orioles and then had it dumped down the drain in favor of light-hitting utility men like Brandon Fahey and Luis Hernandez.

No one is saying that Jon Knott will turn out to be the next Jack Cust. Hell, he may not even be the next Chris Richard. But the Orioles are foolish to have such a hitter in their system and not at least give the guy a chance to prove himself. With this team's offense, Knott could be a cheap solution at DH in 2008, especially if Millar is traded or Gibbons continues to struggle.

And you don't have to stop there either. Daniel Cabrera has frustrated us long enough. See if his potential can still fetch a decent positional prospect, maybe a prospect with as much potential as Cabrera, but one with as many disappointments. Who knows, a change of scenery may help both players.

Then there is Millar, the O's favorite veteran presence who unlike many "veteran presence" players in the past, Millar has actually performed this season. It wouldn't be a crime to hold onto Millar and actually bring him back next season, but Millar is the kind of player a contending team would love to have down the stretch. He keeps things light and he can still hit. And contenders with a shot at the World Series may overpay to get a guy like Millar for a few months.

So there you have it. The Orioles won't make a lot of noise this trade deadline, but they can set themselves up nicely for 2008 just by getting rid of some players in order to give some younger ones a look.

And using the last few months of the season as a try-out for the next season is something they've never done -- but should.

And with Andy MacPhail running things now, it's the perfect opportunity to start. Or else the fans will get the message loud and clear.

People may come and go, but the results will still be the same.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that we do absolutely nothing.