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Five injured Orioles who could help in 2013


Five injured Orioles who could help in 2013

While the Orioles had a successful season, there were some key players missing with injuries. What could next season look like if those players return and contribute?.

Five Orioles who could help in 2013:

1) Nick Markakis

In his previous five seasons, Markakis averaged 160 games per season. This year, he missed 58 due to a hamate bone injury and then a broken thumb courtesy CC Sabathia.

Markakis had a rough off-season last year. He left the final game of the 2011 season with an injury to his abdomen and ended up needing surgery in early January.

His spring debut was delayed, and manager Buck Showalter learned he wasn’t a great sitter.

The Orioles had their worst seven weeks of the season after the hamate bone surgery, and they struggled against the Yankees without Markakis in the lineup.

A full season of Markakis leading off could give the Orioles a lot of extra punch.

2)   Brian Roberts

It’s probably foolish to think that Roberts can play a full season in 2013. After three injury-plagued seasons, a 35-year-old Roberts can’t be counted on at all next season.

He hasn’t been able to play regularly since 2009. Since then, he’s had a back injury, two concussions and hip surgery.

While the Orioles are saying the encouraging things about Roberts, he was able to play in only 17 games last season.

His comeback from the effects of his second concussion was inspiring, but he only had 12 hits, all of them singles.

In his prime, Roberts was a unique combination of speed, power and grace at bat and in the field. While he trouped along with the team during the postseason, it was sad that after a decade of playing for losing teams, he never really got to enjoy the good times.

The Orioles will hope for the best from Roberts, but look elsewhere for a second baseman.

3) Nolan Reimold

Reimold didn’t play after April 30. Coincidentally, that was the last game Mariano Rivera pitched in before injuring his right knee.

Reimold had neck surgery in late June and seemed to be doing well when he stopped by the Orioles’ clubhouse for a few days late last month. Unlike Markakis and Roberts, Reimold did not travel with the team in the postseason.

Without Roberts at the start of the season, Showalter used Reimold as the leadoff hitter.

Perhaps the ideal combination in 2013 would be a platoon of Reimold and Nate McLouth in left. McLouth would have to agree to a return and Reimold’s health needs to improve.

Reimold has never played more than 104 games in any season with the Orioles, and his high point was his first season.

At 29, the Orioles hope that 2013 will finally be his breakout season.

4) Wilson Betemit

As detailed on Thursday, Betemit, who missed most of the last two months of the season with a right wrist injury, may not have a logical place on the team.
Betemit is able to play first, third and left field, none of them particularly well. He does have some versatility and an occasional good bat.

His return may give the Orioles an opportunity to trade him, perhaps to a National League team where he could pinch-hit and fill in occasionally.

5) Tsuyoshi Wada

Wada signed a two-year contract last December, but never pitched for the Orioles. He came up with a tender left elbow in February, and in May underwent Tommy John surgery.

He has been rehabbing the elbow in Sarasota, Fla., and hopes to return early next season.

Wada, had four times as many strikeouts as walks in Japan, was 33-15 in his last two seasons there.

He projects as a spot starter or a left-hander out of the bullpen.

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Orioles' Adam Jones purchases Cal Ripken Jr.'s former estate, per report

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Orioles' Adam Jones purchases Cal Ripken Jr.'s former estate, per report

Cal Ripken Jr.'s 25-acre, 8,545 square-foot home went up for auction this past Saturday and the highest bidder was......Adam Jones? 

The center fielder is purchasing the Orioles legend's former Reisterstown, Md. estate, according to The Athletic

Placed on the market in 2016 for $12.5 million, Ripken reduced the price to $9.7 million last year but was still unable to find a willing buyer. The estate was eventually put up for auction and sold to Jones for an undisclosed amount. 

The six bedroom home has 10 full bathrooms, a movie theater, a gym that overlooks an indoor basketball court, a pool and a baseball field with batting cages, a locker room and soaking tubs. One of the tubs was taken from Memorial Stadium and used by Johnny Unitas and Art Donovan, but Ripken is keeping that one. 

What makes this purchase even more interesting is that Jones will become a free agent at the end of the 2018 season, but that does not mean he plans on re-signing with the team. The 32-year old, who is in his last year of a six-year $85.5 million contract, is known to dip his toes in real estate investments and his wife, Audie Fugett, is a Baltimore native. 

The deal is scheduled to close on June 11. 


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David Price's complete game shuts down Baltimore's offense


David Price's complete game shuts down Baltimore's offense

BOSTON -- One strike away from a four-hit shutout, David Price happily settled for a complete game and his strongest outing of the season.

Price struck out eight and held Baltimore to five hits, including two in the ninth when the Orioles broke up the shutout before the Boston left-hander finished them off in a 6-2 victory for the Red Sox on Thursday night.

"He was amazing," Boston manager Alex Cora said. "He was outstanding. You saw it. Bad swings, up, down, in and out, changeup, cutter, sinkers ... that was fun to watch."

J.D. Martinez hit a two-run homer in the first, and Xander Bogaerts homered with two on during a four-run fifth, giving Price more than enough cushion against the struggling Orioles.

Price (4-4) struck out eight and didn't walk a batter while winning consecutive starts for the first time this season. He cruised through the first eight innings before Andrew Susac led off the ninth with a double, the first Baltimore player to reach second base in the game.

Manny Machado spoiled the shutout bid with a two-out homer, but Price finished off Baltimore on Jonathan Schoop's pop-up to center as the Red Sox improved to 4-0 against Baltimore by taking the makeup game that was rained out on Patriots' Day.

"They're a free-swinging team," said Price, who threw just 95 pitches. "You can go out there and do that or you can go out there for three innings and give up a bunch of runs."

Danny Valencia had a pair of hits for the punchless Orioles, who have lost three of four and have the second-fewest wins in the American League. Valencia nearly had a double in the fifth, but got thrown out at second by left fielder Andrew Benintendi, one of several strong defensive plays that helped Price go the distance.

Hanley Ramirez also caught a foul pop on the top step of Boston's dugout in the second and Mookie Betts ran down a fly ball that was headed to the wall in right.

"The defensive plays that I had today, it makes everything a lot easier," Price said.

Kevin Gausman (3-3) went 4 2/3 innings for Baltimore, allowing six runs and eight hits while striking out six and walking two. He was pulled after Bogaerts drove a high fastball out to left with two men on during Boston's four-run fifth.

"We just got into some sticky situations where we just had to dig ourselves out of a hole and we just couldn't," Susac said.

The Orioles also weren't happy with the strike zone, which Susac said forced Gausman to throw some pitches the Red Sox pounced upon.

Manager Buck Showalter agreed with his catcher.

"I'm very biased, but I didn't think he got a fair shake tonight," Showalter said. "There were a lot of pitches that could have and should have gone his way."