Free Agency Rumors

The past couple of days has brought little in terms of Orioles rumors, although some are still floating around out there.

As of now, the strongest rumor going is the Orioles negotiations with free agent relief pitcher Grant Balfour.  All of the local beat writers have confirmed the Orioles interest in signing Balfour.

The news in these negotiations comes from former MASN blogger and current reporter for the Boston Herald Jen Royle. She reported, via Twitter, that the Orioles offered Balfour a three year deal. She reported the negotiations between the two sides went as such “Orioles went 2 yrs/$6M per, then 3/$7M (incentives), but Balfour wants 3/$8M w/ vesting option. sources say “they’ll be no vesting option.”

Royle reported later that Balfour wants to work out a deal with the Orioles even after being offered a deal by another team. Also, Royle reported that the vesting option for a fourth year is off the table but that the Orioles will meet Balfour somewhere in the middle. She opined that taking away the incentives, and thus guaranteeing the $7 million,  in the third year of the contract may be one way to come to an agreement.

Also, Andrew Rickli, an up and coming baseball insider, who broke the Jim Johnson trade news first on Twitter, is reporting that Balfour and A.J. Burnett are the Orioles top two free agent targets. He notes that a source close to Burnett “fully expects him to play in 2014.”

You can read my piece on the Free Agent Pitching Targets I thought the Orioles should go after for a write up on A.J. Burnett and why I think a pitcher of his ilk would be great for the Orioles starting rotation.

Grant Balfour

Year Age Tm Lg W L ERA G GF SV IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO plus“>ERA+ WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2001 23 MIN AL 0 0 13.50 2 1 0 2.2 3 4 4 2 3 0 2 38 2.250 10.1 6.8 10.1 6.8 0.67
2003 25 MIN AL 1 0 4.15 17 6 0 26.0 23 12 12 4 14 2 30 110 1.423 8.0 1.4 4.8 10.4 2.14
2004 26 MIN AL 4 1 4.35 36 14 0 39.1 35 19 19 4 21 1 42 110 1.424 8.0 0.9 4.8 9.6 2.00
2005 Did not play in major leagues (Injured)
2007 29 TOT MLB 1 2 7.66 25 8 0 24.2 30 21 21 2 20 0 30 60 2.027 10.9 0.7 7.3 10.9 1.50
2007 29 MIL NL 0 2 20.25 3 2 0 2.2 4 6 6 1 4 0 3 25 3.000 13.5 3.4 13.5 10.1 0.75
2007 29 TBD AL 1 0 6.14 22 6 0 22.0 26 15 15 1 16 0 27 75 1.909 10.6 0.4 6.5 11.0 1.69
2008 30 TBR AL 6 2 1.54 51 12 4 58.1 28 10 10 3 24 1 82 287 0.891 4.3 0.5 3.7 12.7 3.42
2009 31 TBR AL 5 4 4.81 73 15 4 67.1 59 38 36 6 33 0 69 90 1.366 7.9 0.8 4.4 9.2 2.09
2010 32 TBR AL 2 1 2.28 57 8 0 55.1 43 16 14 3 17 2 56 172 1.084 7.0 0.5 2.8 9.1 3.29
2011 33 OAK AL 5 2 2.47 62 15 2 62.0 44 17 17 8 20 1 59 163 1.032 6.4 1.2 2.9 8.6 2.95
2012 34 OAK AL 3 2 2.53 75 34 24 74.2 41 21 21 4 28 2 72 154 0.924 4.9 0.5 3.4 8.7 2.57
2013 35 OAK AL 1 3 2.59 65 55 38 62.2 48 20 18 7 27 2 72 145 1.197 6.9 1.0 3.9 10.3 2.67 AS
10 Yrs 28 17 3.27 463 168 72 473.0 354 178 172 43 207 11 514 128 1.186 6.7 0.8 3.9 9.8 2.48
162 Game Avg. 4 2 3.27 68 25 11 69 52 26 25 6 30 2 75 128 1.186 6.7 0.8 3.9 9.8 2.48
AL (10 yrs) 28 15 3.18 460 166 72 470.1 350 172 166 42 203 11 511 132 1.176 6.7 0.8 3.9 9.8 2.52
NL (1 yr) 0 2 20.25 3 2 0 2.2 4 6 6 1 4 0 3 25 3.000 13.5 3.4 13.5 10.1 0.75

A.J. Burnett

Year Age Tm Lg W L ERA G GS IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO ERA+ WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
1999 22 FLA NL 4 2 3.48 7 7 41.1 37 23 16 3 25 2 33 124 1.500 8.1 0.7 5.4 7.2 1.32
2000 23 FLA NL 3 7 4.79 13 13 82.2 80 46 44 8 44 3 57 92 1.500 8.7 0.9 4.8 6.2 1.30
2001 24 FLA NL 11 12 4.05 27 27 173.1 145 82 78 20 83 3 128 105 1.315 7.5 1.0 4.3 6.6 1.54
2002 25 FLA NL 12 9 3.30 31 29 204.1 153 84 75 12 90 5 203 121 1.189 6.7 0.5 4.0 8.9 2.26
2003 26 FLA NL 0 2 4.70 4 4 23.0 18 13 12 2 18 2 21 91 1.565 7.0 0.8 7.0 8.2 1.17
2004 27 FLA NL 7 6 3.68 20 19 120.0 102 50 49 9 38 0 113 112 1.167 7.7 0.7 2.9 8.5 2.97
2005 28 FLA NL 12 12 3.44 32 32 209.0 184 97 80 12 79 1 198 116 1.258 7.9 0.5 3.4 8.5 2.51
2006 29 TOR AL 10 8 3.98 21 21 135.2 138 67 60 14 39 3 118 115 1.305 9.2 0.9 2.6 7.8 3.03
2007 30 TOR AL 10 8 3.75 25 25 165.2 131 74 69 23 66 2 176 119 1.189 7.1 1.2 3.6 9.6 2.67
2008 31 TOR AL 18 10 4.07 35 34 221.1 211 109 100 19 86 2 231 104 1.342 8.6 0.8 3.5 9.4 2.69
2009 32 NYY AL 13 9 4.04 33 33 207.0 193 99 93 25 97 0 195 114 1.401 8.4 1.1 4.2 8.5 2.01
2010 33 NYY AL 10 15 5.26 33 33 186.2 204 118 109 25 78 2 145 82 1.511 9.8 1.2 3.8 7.0 1.86
2011 34 NYY AL 11 11 5.15 33 32 190.1 190 115 109 31 83 2 173 83 1.434 9.0 1.5 3.9 8.2 2.08
2012 35 PIT NL 16 10 3.51 31 31 202.1 189 86 79 18 62 1 180 107 1.241 8.4 0.8 2.8 8.0 2.90
2013 36 PIT NL 10 11 3.30 30 30 191.0 165 79 70 11 67 3 209 107 1.215 7.8 0.5 3.2 9.8 3.12
15 Yrs 147 132 3.99 375 370 2353.2 2140 1142 1043 232 955 31 2180 105 1.315 8.2 0.9 3.7 8.3 2.28
162 Game Avg. 13 12 3.99 34 34 215 195 104 95 21 87 3 199 105 1.315 8.2 0.9 3.7 8.3 2.28
NL (9 yrs) 75 71 3.63 195 192 1247.0 1073 560 503 95 506 20 1142 109 1.266 7.7 0.7 3.7 8.2 2.26
AL (6 yrs) 72 61 4.39 180 178 1106.2 1067 582 540 137 449 11 1038 100 1.370 8.7 1.1 3.7 8.4 2.31

About The Author

- Staff Writer

Alex began writing for Orioles-Nation.com in October 2013. Alex focuses on the numbers side of the game - in particular advanced sabermetrics. He is from Annapolis, Maryland, born and raised. He attended Northwestern University for his undergraduate degree and is now in the process of getting his Master’s Degree from the University of Maryland. Follow Alex on Twitter @AlexConwayON. Email Alex at conway2490@gmail.com.