Orioles may give Mets competition for Delgado

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Following yesterday’s report that the Mets are interested in re-signing Carlos Delgado, Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com notes that they may have some competition from the Orioles:

Carlos Delgado hasn’t started playing for Gigantes de Carolina of the Puerto Rican Winter League. The Orioles still intend to scout him later this month unless they find another first baseman.

It’ll be interesting to see what happens if there’s a multi-team bidding war for Delgado, because it seems unlikely that any of his suitors will go beyond a one-year contract for a 37-year-old who missed all but 26 games last season and is coming off hip surgery. However, it’s looking more and more like Delgado won’t have to settle for an incentive-driven deal and may be able to secure more than $5 million in guarantees after making $12 million last season.
He hit .271/.353/.518 with 38 homers in 2008 and batted .298/.393/.521 before being shut down in mid-May this season, so if healthy Delgado still looks capable of making a big impact. By comparison, Orioles first basemen (mostly Aubrey Huff, Ty Wigginton, and Michael Aubrey) combined to hit just .262/.318/.411 with 18 homers this season, ranking 12th in the 14-team American League with a .729 OPS.

Kendrys Morales pitched a scoreless inning Sunday

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Nothing went right for the Blue Jays this weekend. The club was swept in a four-game series against the Athletics, including a 9-2 loss on Sunday. Not wanting to burn out his bullpen in a lopsided game — and perhaps thinking about the general entertainment value involved — Blue Jays manager John Gibbons decided to send designated hitter Kendrys Morales out to pitch the ninth inning. And in typical baseball fashion, he saw better results than some of the dudes who do this all the time.

Morales, who actually pitched in Cuba nearly 20 years ago, worked around a walk for a scoreless inning. He induced three fly outs and topped out at 87.4 mph on his fastball, per Brooks Baseball. He received a standing ovation on the way back to the dugout. Morales hasn’t been hearing that sort of thing for his contributions with the bat recently.

Morales, 34, is batting just .163/.248/.279 with three home runs through 32 games this season. There’s been some understandable clamoring for top prospect Vladmir Guerrero, Jr. to cut into his at-bats. For his part, Morales has been doing everything he can to break out of his slumber at the plate, including ditching the glasses he started wearing during spring training. Hey, whatever works. Morales also had two of Toronto’s four hits on Sunday.

On the heels of Morales’ first MLB appearance on the mound, it feels rather appropriate that the Blue Jays will get their first look at Angels sensation Shohei Ohtani — at least as a hitter — beginning on Tuesday.