Duquette still focused on pitching depth.

BALTIMORE—The Orioles are in the market for pitching depth, executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette reiterated prior to Tuesday’s game.

Duqette, who told MLB.com that was the priority over the weekend, said nothing is imminent although the organization continues to have “meaningful discussions” and is equipped to make a move in advance of Thursday’s deadline.

“We have pretty good depth to our farm system,” Duquette said. “So I think we have the wherewithal to make a deal.”

There are several Minor League names that don’t figure into discussions as Duquette seems to be standing by his belief of building from within. The O’s are not making pitchers Dylan Bundy and Hunter Harvey viable in trade talks and they also are not parting with young righty Kevin Gausman, who is currently part of the team’s rotation.

“We’d like the star players to come up and make an impact on the team,” Duquette said. “In 2012, we brought up Manny [Machado] and he made a difference in the pennant race. In 2014, we’ve got Kevin Gausman on our team, and we hope he will impact the race, so that’s really the first choice, to have those really talented players play for us and prove themselves in the big leagues.” 

If the O’s do add pitching depth, it figures to be bullpen help or a starter they can have ready in the Minor Leagues. With Ubaldo Jimenez slated to make his first rehab start Tuesday night, the O’s could have a roster crunch in the rotation soon and adding a frontline starter —especially given the haul it would require to give up— isn’t very likely.

And while the club is looking around at some upgrades postionally, Duquette reminded reporters on Tuesday that the Orioles will continue to operate on a defense-first basis in any potential moves.

“If you look at it, those are a couple areas where we could improve,” he said. 
I got to say, there’s tradeoffs in everything. Our guys have done a nice job defensively at second, have done a nice job defensively catching. They’ve contributed offensively, although it hasn’t been consistent. Ideally, we’d like to have a more consistent contribution from those positions, but given the choice we’d much rather have the defense first.”

“I think we have the defense. If we could add to our offensive team, that would probably be something we could take a look at.”

2 Comments

Britt, I enjoy your write ups. They are informative
THX for the info
Jerry M

Thanks, Jerry!

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