Orioles manager Buck Showalter just met with the media here in Dallas, and here are some of the most interesting tidbits from that…
*Asked jokingly if the club had already signed Prince Fielder, Showalter quipped they’d leave that to the “big boys”. As I blogged earlier today, that’s not a likely landing spot for Fielder.
*There isn’t necessarily a need for the Orioles to go out and sign a big name DH, as they could always use more bench depth and rotate guys like Nick Markakis, Matt Wieters and Adam Jones in the position to give them a day off of sorts.
*Speaking of Markakis, he is nearly 100 percent and Showalter said the team has plans for him to a specialist just to make sure they are taking all the proper precautions. Markakis was dealing with a pelvic/lower abdomen injury the last few weeks of the season that’s being described as a deep bone bruise.
*The Orioles aren’t actively pursuing other second base options and the hope remains that Brian Roberts will be able to stay healthy and on the field. Showalter said Roberts is progressing by doing baseball activities “on and off” and there have been very little, if any setbacks, in that regard.
*The need for another outfielder to back up Adam Jones in center field and possibly platoon in left field is another club need although not on the front burner since the Orioles are actively pursuing pitching. Given Showalter’s remarks, it seems they would prefer to have a platoon with Reimold –who could still win the left field job outright — and the most obtainable pitching will come in relief.
It’s much easier to build a bullpen than a starting rotation in the winter, and the Orioles could always shift Jim Johnson to the rotation to help bolster that area. Johnson’s role for next season is still undecided.