Ugh. The Baltimore Orioles have had an exciting spring, with many players outperforming expectations. But a lot of the upcoming roster decisions seem to be headed horribly wrong.
Alex Gonzalez is a much better option to fill in at 3rd than Ryan Flaherty. Flaherty has minor league options, so he can get more seasoning at AAA Norfolk, without hurting his longterm place on the team, if he has one. Keeping him on the roster just because he's been on the team for 2 years doesn't change the fact that he was an automatic out his entire Orioles career, other then a brief period right before Brian Roberts came off the DL. Jemile Weeks seems to be a bust, other than freeing up FA money from trading Jim Johnson, but at least he has speed.
Kelvin De La Cruz and Evan Meek have had way better springs than the pitchers being mentioned above them for the last bullpen spot, as did Eddie Gamboa and Brock Huntzinger, who have already been sent down. Britton and Stinson will be there since they are out of options, but give the last spot (if there is one) to someone deserving.
They are considering bringing in someone from the outside to backup C Matt Wieters. Picking a backup catcher who can field but can't hit is a problem that seems to plague the O's every year, giving them an automatic out in the lineup whenever they rest Wieters. Clevenger and Monell are both having good springs, so give one a chance, with the other on standby.
Why in the world is Nolan Reimold considered a frontrunner to make the team in a bench/OF/DH position? HUH?! He is terrible, and always hurt. He is behind in his spring progress. He is a bust.
The O's almost have to go with Delmon Young to DH when Cruz plays LF, and Berry as a pinch runner. Steve Pearce, Reimold, and Flaherty are never going to be more than bench players. It's time to accept that.
I'd love for once to see them go north with the best 25, but that's not how baseball works these days.
©2014 Denim McDemus