Report: Orioles place Ty Wigginton on waivers

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According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Orioles placed infielder Ty Wigginton on waivers Wednesday afternoon.  Again, most players are placed on waivers this time of year and it’s going to be hard for a claiming team to execute a trade.  So let’s not get too worked up.  But it is worth talking about.

Wigginton, 32, has thrown up a mediocre .261/.334/.456 batting line in 395 at-bats this year for Baltimore and isn’t a strong defender on the infield even though the O’s have played him at a variety of positions this season. 

What he does bring is power, and there isn’t a contending team in baseball that would pass on adding a reliable power bat.  Wigginton, a right-handed hitter, has tallied 18 home runs, 21 doubles and 60 RBI in 394 at-bats this season.  Some of that production has been aided by the cozy confines of Baltimore’s Camden Yards, but he’s no slouch.

The Twins could use Wigginton as a fill-in for Justin Morneau, who is still nursing a concussion, the Red Sox could bring him on to ease the pain of losing Kevin Youkilis, and the White Sox have been on the hunt for offense ever since July.  If he passes through waivers in the American League, a host of National League teams would have interest as well.  The Cardinals are looking for corner infield help, the Giants need some run-scoring potential and the Padres certainly wouldn’t mind boosting their bench.  We’ll see if something can be pulled off.

Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto reportedly asks to be traded

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Craig Mish of MLB Network Radio is reporting that Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto has requested a trade out of Miami. Jon Heyman is characterizing it as Realmuto telling the team that he “wouldn’t mind” a trade.

Either way, Realmuto has no power to force a trade. This isn’t the NBA or something. Still, it’s evidence of just how dreary a prospect remaining in Miami is for Marlins veterans in the wake of trades that sent Giancarlo Stanton to New York, Marcell Ozuna to St. Louis.

Realmuto, who will turn 27 just before the 2018 season, hit .278/.332/.451 with 17 homers, 65 RBI, and eight steals over 141 games this past season. He only has three years of service time and is arbitration eligible for the first time this offseason. He made just $562K in the 2017 and will get a big raise this year, but he’s still going to be underpaid based on his production. If the Marlins wanted to trade him, they’d get a nice return. Why they would want to trade him, I have no idea.

Expect more of this sort of thing as the Marlins slash payroll and make it clear that their immediate priorities are more about saving money and less about winning baseball games. Which may or may not be a valid goal for the team’s new owners, but is certainly a letdown for baseball players and fans.