Orioles Cancelled Balfour Deal over Knee and Wrist Issues

Baltimore Orioles trade rumorsThe Baltimore Orioles are in the final stages of what surely has to be described as a disappointing offseason, the low point being when it balked on a Grant Balfour contract to replace Jim Johnson.

Balfour is widely considered one of the top three relievers on the Free Agent market, with Fernando Rodney and Joaquin Benoit, the latter of which already signed in San Diego.

The Orioles traded its former closer, Jim Johnson, earlier this offseason to sign Jemile Weeks, who will compete for the second base spot, adding depth left by the departure of Brian Roberts.

It was widely considered the Orioles felt Balfour’s shoulder would not hold up but recent information has revealed the concerns were with the closer’s knee and wrist. Details to these concerns remain unknown for now.

While backing away on a two-year, $15 million dollar offer, the Orioles have still yet to sign a closer and appear cool on Rodney. Baltimore is also looking into an upgrade at DH and adding another starter to a thin rotation.

Other Orioles’ News:

  • The franchise may be the favorites to sign a few remaining free agents. Baltimore has expressed interest in 31-year-old Ervin Santana, as well as veteran Mark Reynolds. Baltimore has also looked into Delmon Young, though Santana and Reynolds may be more likely to head to Camden Yards.
  • Adding Santana and either Reynolds or Young would be nice moves in mid-January since Santana could be a middle of the rotation starter, even in Camden Yards, even in the AL East. Signing Santana would likely cost close to $100 million dollars plus the loss of a draft pick, but it’s a move the Orioles will need to strongly consider if they want to contend while the core is young. Santana is likely there for the Orioles’ taking should they choose to commit to a high dollar contract.
  • For Reynolds, it would appear the Twins, Rangers and Nationals are interested as well, with the Yankees recently pulling out unwilling to offer the powerful righty a major league contract. Reynolds would not cost a pick and shouldn’t be expensive, but his floor for a contract would likely be a MLB deal and he would be used to provide occasional home runs out of the DH slot.