It’s time for a new face for the franchise
The first month has come and gone, and it is time for Orioles fans (and management) to take an honest look at where the Os stand in the league. At 8-21 the Orioles are in last place. The Red Sox and Yankees are for real, and the two of them look to be running away with the division.
Teams in Toronto, Oakland, Anaheim and Seatle all look like contenders for wild card spots. The Orioles just don’t have enough to compete with those teams.
The time to start the rebuild is now. Actually, the time to start was this off season. But the owner and management refused to see the writing on the wall.
Manny Machado will be a free agent after this season. He already expressed his desire to test the free agent market. He could command between $25 and $35 million a season. For as much as eight to ten years. Machado is entering the prime of his career, and will be paid accordingly.
If the Orioles began this process in the off season, the team that traded Machado would get draft pick compensation if he signs elsewhere. That would have increased his trade value a bit.
Now, the Orioles risk losing him, with the hopes of a third round draft pick as the only return. Unless the Orioles trade him. And trade him soon.
The New York Mets have a crowded outfield as of now. Charismatic outfielder Brandon Nimmo seems to be the odd man out at the moment, and his playing time is limited. Right now. The Mets feature an outfield with aging veterans Jay Bruce, and Yoenis Cespedes. Cespedes missed half of the 2017 campaign due to injuries. Jay Bruce already missed time this season with a foot injury. If one of these players gets injuries, the Mets are a lot less likely to trade their budding star.
Nimmo would possibly be the best return for a player that is soon to be a free agent in recent years. In 2015, these same Mets traded Michael Fulmer to the Detroit Tigers for Cespedes.
Fulmer went on to win Rookie of the Year the following season. So the Mets have a history of trading quality young players for soon to be free agents.
Nimmo is under contract until 2023, and already has had success at the MLB level. He even represented the United States in the World Baseball Classic in 2017.
Nimmo can play all corner outfield positions. He would be great to pair with Adam Jones. Or he could take over center field, and allow Baltimore to move on from Jones as well, further boasting the rebuilding effort.
The time to make these moves is now. Baltimore started slow, and with so many teams already far ahead of them, even if the Orioles improve their play, the play offs seem a long shot.