There are only a couple of free agents remaining on the open market who could have real value in 2011. Justin Duchscherer is one of them.
The 33-year-old right-hander boasts an excellent 3.13 career ERA and 1.14 career WHIP across eight major league seasons. He has struggled to stay healthy in recent years, but his numbers have remained strong during the times that he has not on the disabled list and he told Britt Ghiroli of MLB.com last week that he is “pretty much 100 percent” heading into spring training this season.
The Nationals are hoping to land him, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com. The Mariners want him too, a source told Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. The Orioles are also in the running, and they might have the best shot right now.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, Baltimore is “in the lead” for Duchscherer and may have already given him a one-year major league contract offer.
The right-hander would probably get a chance to land one of the final spots in the O’s staring rotation this spring. Brian Matusz is a lock, Jeremy Guthrie is too. But Duchscherer could probably beat out some of the other young pitchers in Orioles camp if he simply shows that his hip is intact.
NEW YORK — With star outfielder Adam Jones nursing a tender hamstring, the Baltimore Orioles selected the contract of Julio Borbon from Double-A Bowie and optioned pitcher Mike Wright to Triple-A Norfolk.
Borbon was inserted in the starting lineup for Baltimore, batting ninth against hard-throwing New York Yankees rookie Chad Green.
“We had some other center field options,” manager Buck Showalter said. “Borbon is our best option at this point.”
Jones left Friday’s game in the second inning with a left hamstring strain. He departed the previous night’s game at Washington in the ninth inning with hamstring cramps and aggravated the injury hustling down the first base line on a soft grounder to third.
“I got a feeling that if he hadn’t had that first swinging bunt, it might not have been a problem,” Showalter indicated. “He’s not going to trot to first base as much as I talked to him about it before the game.”
Although Jones was unable to talk his way into Saturday’s lineup, Showalter speculated that he might be available to pinch-hit.
The 30-year old Borbon was 2 for 9 in five games with the Orioles earlier this season, but was designated for assignment on July 26. To create room for Borbon on the 40-man roster, pitcher Logan Ondrusek was designated for assignment on Friday.
Good news in Boston: An MRI on Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi‘s left knee revealed no structural damage.
Benintendi slipped while trying to avoid a tag at second base, injuring his leg, but it appears he’s avoided a serious injury. A timetable for his return isn’t known at this point, but the Red Sox expect to get him back before the end of the season.
Benintendi is hitting .324/.365/.485 with a homer and ten RBI in 21 games.