The Orioles found themselves in a bit of controversy last month when they backed out of a two-year, $15 million deal with free agent reliever Grant Balfour. Balfour had a four-year-long streak with at least 55 innings pitched and a sub-2.60 ERA, but the O’s claimed they were concerned over his wrist and knee (which required surgery last February) — not his surgically-repaired right shoulder.
Add another name to the “concern” pile. The Orioles signed outfielder Tyler Colvin last week, but ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Orioles have an issue with the results of Colvin’s physical.
More, from Crasnick:
The Yankees may have spent nearly half a billion dollars on free agents, but the Orioles take the cake for having the most interesting off-season thus far.
Colvin has battled injuries over the last two years. He suffered a collapsed lung in 2012 and was hampered by back problems late last season. It is believable that the Orioles would see something awry in his physical, but they’re almost to the point where they’re the boy crying wolf. The O’s will likely offer clarification on the situation in the coming days.
Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays and starter Marco Estrada are nearing an agreement on a contract extension. The deal is expected to be for one guaranteed year, Morosi adds.
Estrada, 34, was set to become a free agent after the season. He earned $26 million on a two-year contract signed with the Jays in November 2015. While the right-hander has a subpar 4.84 ERA on the season, he has a solid 170/67 K/BB ratio in 176 2/3 innings and has looked much better since the end of July. Between July 31 and his most recent start on Saturday, Estrada owns a 3.75 ERA.
J.A. Happ is the only other starter technically under contract with the Jays next season. Marcus Stroman will be eligible for his second year of arbitration and the Jays will certainly agree to give him a raise on his $3.4 million salary for the 2017 season. The Jays will likely be active this offseason in adding rotation help and they’re starting early by locking up Estrada.
Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. robbed Orioles first baseman Chris Davis of his 25th home run on Tuesday evening, leaping at the fence in center field to make the catch and keep the game scoreless in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Davis swung at the first pitch he saw from Drew Pomeranz, a slider that crossed the middle of the plate.
This game has potential playoff implications, as the first-place Red Sox hold a three-game lead over the Yankees in the NL East. Meanwhile, the Orioles are still in the AL Wild Card race, trailing the Twins by 5.5 games for the second Wild Card slot.