Orioles pick up 2015 options on Chen and O’Day

As expected, the Orioles have exercised their 2015 club options on pitchers Wei-Yin Chen and Darren O’Day and declined the options of right fielder Nick Markakis and catcher Nick Hundley.

Chen, 29, set career-highs with 16 wins and a 3.54 ERA in 31 starts for the Orioles last season. The lefty will make $4.75 million in 2015

The 32-year-old O’Day went 5-2 with four saves and ranked seventh among American League relievers with a career-best 1.70 ERA over 68 appearances. He was a critical part of the backend of the O’s ‘pen, allowing just 13 earned runs over 68 2/3 innings and will make $4.25 million next season.

Markakis, who will now become a free agent along with Hundley, had his $17.5 million declined but both sides remain hopeful that he can remain an Oriole. The longest-tenured active player on the O’s, Markakis will get a $2 million buyout per the terms of his contract. Hundley, who had a $5 million club option, will not get a buyout. Both players now join the list of O’s free agents, which also includes Nelson Cruz, Andrew Miller, Delmon Young, Kelly Johnson, Johan Santana, Alexi Casilla and Joe Saunders.

Os get three Gold Glove finalists

The Orioles have three finalists for the Rawlings Gold Glove Awards announced on Thursday morning, with shortstop J.J. Hardy, center fielder Adam Jones and right fielder Nick Markakis all honored in their respective American League categories.

The awards, created in 1957, are determined by a survey a player and managers —which make up 75 percent— and the Society for Sabermetric Reasearch accounts for the other 25 percent. The winners will be revealed during special award show on ESPN 2 on November 4 at 7 p.m ET.

Baltimore, which has won an AL-best 67 Gold Gloves since the award’s inception, had six finalists last season and is well represented once again. Hardy is vying for his third consecutive Gold Glove win, while Jones is trying for his fourth career award. Markakis won a Gold Glove in 2011.

Hardy is up against Kansas City’s Alcides Escobar and Chicago’s Alexei Ramirez. Boston’s Jackie Bradley, Jr. and Chicago’s Adam Eaton were nominated along with Jones among centerfielders, while Markakis will go head-to-head with Tampa Bay’s Kevin Kiermaier and Angels’ outfielder Kole Calhoun.

Davis still suspended

KANSAS CITY— Chris Davis will finish out his 25-game suspension by missing the Orioles 2015 Opening Day.

Davis, who was with the team in Kansas City, declined to speak to a group of reporters following Baltimore’s season-ending 2-1 loss to the Royals.

“I don’t think so guys,” Davis said as he walked past several media members. “I still got one game left.”


The suspension, which was for testing positive for amphetamines associated with the drug Adderall, caused Davis to miss the final 17 regular-season games and the O’s sweep in the American League Division Series and Championship Series means the All-Star has one more game to serve.

Davis, who was working out at the team’s spring facility in Sarasota, Fla. in the event the Orioles made it to the World Series, has not spoke since issuing a statement through the MLB Players Association shortly after the initial news broke.

“I apologize to my teammates, coaches, the Orioles organization and especially the fans,” the statement said “I made a mistake by taking Adderall. I had permission to use it in the past, but do not have a therapeutic-use exemption (TUE) this year. I accept my punishment and will begin serving my suspension immediately.”

Davis, who lead the Majors in home runs a season ago, hit 26 homers with 72 RBIs in 127 games, but he batted just .196 with a Major League-leading 173 strikeouts in 2014.

Guthrie apologizes for Tuesday’s t-shirt

Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie apologized on Wednesday afternoon for the t-shirt he won on Tuesday night that stated, “These O’s Ain’t Royal” following Kansas City’s 2-1 win. Guthrie said the shirt, a play on a song lyric from Chris Brown’s “Loyal’ song, was given to him on Tuesday and he showed a “lack of judgement” in wearing it in his post-game press conference.

An Oriole for five years, Guthrie said several players reached out to tell him they thought it was a low blow and, while didn’t see how it was disrespecting the city of Baltimore and organization, apologized and said the shirt was going to be thrown away.

“Apologies to everyone who was offended,” said Guthrie, who also took to his Twitter account this morning to apologize to his former organization.

The Royals are up 3-0 in the ALCS.

ALCS Game 3

Miguel Gonzalez will be in the interview room later, meaning he’s likely the Game 4 starter.

ORIOLES LINEUP
Nick Markakis RF
Alejandro De Aza LF
Adam Jones CF
Nelson Cruz DH
Steve Pearce 1B
J.J. Hardy SS
Ryan Flaherty 3B
Nick Hundley C
Jonathan Schoop 2B

Wei-Yin Chen LHP

Dyson’s trash talking

Some interesting comments today from Kansas City’s Jarrod Dyson, who made headlines last night for saying that the ALCS is not going back to Baltimore.

Here is what Dyson said this afternoon from the Royals workout:

“I’ll just tell you this, man. If we win Game 3, it’s going to be hard for them to look themselves in the mirror and say, ‘We can win the next four.’ That’s tough to do, man. … Everything must click. I’m just being honest. If we take Game 3, I guarantee theere’s going to be multiple people over there saying, ‘Man, ain’t no way we can beat these guys four games in a row.’ It can be done, but not everybody’s going to be on the same page. There’s going to be some people ready to go home. There’s going to be people not cheering in the dugout. Just like if it was vice versa on this side, it might be the same way. But we’re in a good position, we’re enjoying it, and we’re going to take advantage of it.

We came in as an underdog. All the hype was about them hitting homers, and we have the speed. But we showed pop over there, and I think it shocked them. WE hit good in their park every time we come there. But I just don’t think they expected us to come in there and win two. I just really don’t. I could tell the way Buck was making his moves, he wanted to win bad. He was taking his starters out in the fourth, both starters, and it was just matchup after matchup after that. That’s how you play the game. You’re trying to get that win at home. At least one. And if you don’t get that win, it’s pretty frustrating.”

ALCS Game 2

Greetings from Camden Yards, where the Orioles will look to bounce back from last night’s 8-6 Game 1 loss to the Royals.

*The Orioles will start lefty Wei-Yin Chen for Monday’s Game 3 of the American League Championship Series in Kansas City, followed by right-hander Miguel Gonzalez.

That plan is contingent on neither guy being used in Saturday afternoon’s Game 2, with manager Buck Showalter cautioning reporters that both guys Chen and Gonzalez are available in relief as the O’s have adopted an all-hands-on-deck approach this postseason.

“He’s on the [lineup] card, he and Miggi,” Showalter said. “[Starter] Bud [Norris] is not. [Game 1 starter Chris] Tillman is not, everyone else is on call.”

Norris pitched Game 3 of the ALDS against Detroit and he pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings in an impressive postseason debut. Chen struggled in Game 2 against a right-handed heavy Tigers lineup but has pitched well at Kauffman Stadium, going 1-0 with a 2.84 ERA in two career starts.

“I like Chen a little more in their ballpark and Bud has got some experience in 4 o’clock games,” Showalter said of the factors that went into switching the two this series. “There were a couple other things. “To have Bud available in Game 5 [in relief] if needed. The third left-hander, Chen, doesn’t play as much out of the ‘pen.”

*The Orioles did a nice job of keeping the Royals speed in check last night and Norris hopes to do the same. He’s a little slower to the plate than Tillman but is very athletic and catcher Caleb Joseph –the better arm of the two– is behind the plate.

*Showalter said with the exception of one reliever he expects everyone to be available in the ‘pen this afternoon.

Here are your lineups…

ROYALS LINEUP
Alcides Escobar SS
Nori Aoki RF
Lorenzo Cain CF
Eric Hosmer 1B
Billy Butler DH
Alex Gordon LF
Salvador Perez C
Omar Infante 2B
Mike Moustakas 3B

Yordano Ventura RHP

ORIOLES LINEUP
Nick Markakis RF
Alejandro De Aza LF
Adam Jones CF
Nelson Cruz DH
Steve Pearce 1B
J.J. Hardy SS
Ryan Flaherty 3B
Caleb Joseph C
Jonathan Schoop 2B

Bud Norris RHP

ALCS Game 1 (updated)

There’s rain in the forecast all night, but the Orioles and Royals are hoping to get this one in. Per usual, there will be immediate updates on Twitter on the game’s status with the tarp on the field currently at Camden Yards. Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he got a good weather report and feels confident they will get this game in. If not, the makeup game on Sunday would be at 4 p.m. which would be the original Game 2.

The O’s are waiting until after tonight’s game to announce a Game 2 starter, with Showalter deciding between lefty Wei-Yin Chen and righty Bud Norris. Both guys will be available in the bullpen tonight.

Quintin Berry and Ryan Webb are here, along with infielder Chris Davis and they will travel to Kansas City with the team. So will Steve Clevenger, T.J. McFarland and Matt Wieters, with the team still deciding on Ubaldo Jimenez.

Here are the lineups…

ROYALS LINEUP
Alcides Escobar SS
Nori Aoki RF
Lorenzo Cain CF
Eric Hosmer 1B
Billy Butler DH
Alex Gordon LF
Salvador Perez C
Omar Infante 2B
Mike Moustakas 3B

James Shields RHP

Os announce ALCS roster

BALTIMORE— The Orioles added left-handed pitcher Brian Matusz to their American League Championship Series roster, removing right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez to clear a spot. The rest of the roster, which includes 11 pitchers again, remains unchanged from the AL Division Series.

Matusz, part of the Opening Day roster, was removed last series given how well Detroit hits against lefties and since the Royals splits are even it was expected that the O’s would add a lefty back to the bullpen. T.J. McFarland is not on the roster for the second consecutive series with Jimenez, who was inconsistent all season, also off for the best-of-seven set.

The rotation will be the same four guys: Chris Tillman, Wei-Yin Chen, Bud Norris and Miguel Gonzalez. Though the exact order is still to be announced. Tillman is the Os Game 1 starter again and he’s is 2-2 with a 6.21 ERA in five starts against the Royals. He also tossed his first career shutout in Kansas City, a five-hit game, in May. Starter Kevin Gausman will once again be a weapon out of the bullpen, as a late-inning righty or a multi-inning guy.

Catchers Nick Hundley and Caleb Joseph are back, as are infielders Kelly Johnson and Jimmy Paredes. The O’s considered speedy outfielder Quintin Berry, who joined reliever Ryan Webb and infielder Chris Davis as players who will remain with Baltimore although they are not on the active roster.

More coming shortly on Orioles.com.

Os reach extension agreement with Hardy

BALTIMORE— The Orioles have reached a multi-year contract extension with shortstop J.J. Hardy that could be announced as early as Thursday, a Major League source confirmed to MLB.com.

It’s believed that Hardy’s deal is three years and MLB Network’s Ken Rosenthal tweeted out that it’s expected to land north of the $40 million range. The Orioles and Hardy, who would have been a free agent this winter, had some contract talks this spring that stalled and the shortstop stopped talking about any progress —of lack thereof— during the season. Of all of the Orioles pending free agents, a group that also includes Nelson Cruz and Nick Markakis, Hardy was the one manager Buck Showalter pushed for the most as the Gold Glover captains the team’s infield and has been a rock at shortstop.

Hardy, acquired in the offseason by former president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail, signed a three-year, $22.5 million extension with Baltimore in 2012 which included incentives for being an All-Star, Gold Glover and Silver Slugger. Considered one of the League’s best defensive shortstop, Hardy would have command a hefty price tag on the open market but has made it no secret that he wanted to stay in Baltimore and play for the O’s.

Hardy has a .259/.301/.420 slash line in four regular seasons with Baltimore. The deal was first reported by 105.7 The Fan.

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