The Orioles have been linked in recent weeks to free agents Colby Rasmus, Norichika Aoki, and Ichiro Suzuki. But trading for a new outfielder is another route being explored by the Baltimore front office.
According to MASN’s Roch Kubatko, the Orioles “have engaged in trade talks with the Dodgers” regarding Andre Ethier. Los Angeles has already traded Matt Kemp this offseason — which helped chip away at the club’s outfield logjam — but it’s a safe guess that Ethier is still very much available.
Ethier, 32, batted just .249 with a .691 OPS and four home runs in 130 games last season for the Dodgers. He’s owed $56 million over the next three years and carries a $17.5 million vesting option for 2018.
Carl Crawford, Joc Pederson, and Yasiel Puig should be the Dodgers’ starting outfielders in 2015.
Last night Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was placed on the injured list with a strained muscle in his right foot. That injury inspired the Cubs to go out and get another catcher. They acquired Martín Maldonado in a trade with Kansas City in exchange for lefty Mike Montgomery, in a deal that was announced after the Cubs loss to the Reds.
Maldonado, 32, was a Gold Glove winner in 2017 with the Angels. At the moment he’s hitting .227 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 74 games. Obviously, though, defense is his calling card, as he’s a .220 career hitter with 57 homers and 210 RBIs in 686 games.
Montgomery, 30, is 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA in 20 relief appearances for the Cubs this year. He’s heading back to where his pro career began. He was drafted by Kanas City in 2008, though he was traded away in the James Shields/Wade David/Wil Myers deal in 2012. He made his big league debut for Seattle in 2015. Dayton Moore said last night that the Royals plan to use Montgomery in the rotation as a replacement for Homer Bailey, who was dealt to Oakland on Sunday.