Andy MacPhail joked that there was a collection plate to his left for him, and Jeremy Guthrie teased that Brian Matusz was going to donate half his salary to a deal for him. Vladimir Guerrero was on everyone’s mind at the 2011 Orioles FanFest on Saturday at the Baltimore Convention Center. In 2010, Miguel Tejada was signed on FanFest day, a nice ploy by the Birds to get the fans fired up. Many thought Vlad would be the 2011 version. Nothing was announced.
On Monday there was an announcement.
His contract is rather complicated. Duchscherer receives an automatic base salary of $700,000. He gets $400,000 more for making the 25-man roster, and $3.4 million more if he makes 30 or more starts for the Orioles. He is just about guaranteed that $1.1 million, but the full $4.5 is unlikely. He has never started 30 games in his career.
Duchscherer was an All-Star reliever in 2005 with the Oakland Athletics, and an All-Star in 2008, his first season as a starter.
‘Duke’ saw little recognition for his great season in ’08 since he pitched for the then irrelevant A’s. He finished with a 10-8 record, 2.54 ERA, and a 0.995 WHIP. He only surrendered eleven homeruns through 141.2 innings as well as, music to the ears of the Orioles and their fans, only 34 walks. Opponents were only hitting .210 off Justin.
Battling injuries and clinical depression, Duke missed the entire 2009 season. In June of 2010, after pitching only 28 innings, he underwent season ending hip surgery.
He has a career ERA of 3.13 in 32 starts and 192 relief appearances. Music to the ears of the Orioles and their fans – Duchscherer only walked 34 batters in 141.2 innings in 2008 and averages only 2.4 walks per nine.
Duchscherer will most likely be the third starter in the rotation behind Jeremy Guthrie and Brian Matusz. At 33 years old, Duchsherer would be the oldest Orioles’ starter.
This post was written by Tim Anderson, you can follow Tim on Twitter @sportsnickelTim.