By my count, the Orioles have 11 players who are either free agents after this season or have options of one type or another. I thought I'd post about each of these and try to guess what will happen with each.
1) Brian Roberts - In the final year of a contract that saw him paid $10M this season. The negatives are that he was 35 this year and doesn't steal bases anymore (3 SB). The positives are he'd probably come back cheap and his OPS was higher than his competition (Flaherty and Casilla). I'll guess they bring him back for one more season while Schoop waits in the wings at Norfolk and Flaherty becomes the utility guy.
2) Nate McLouth - Signed a cheap ($2M), one-year deal last offseason. The 31 year old easily lead the team in steals with 30. He'll look for a multi-year deal and my guess is the O's give it to him. Something like 2 years/$10M.
3) Michael Morse - I thought he would rebound at Camden Yards but he did not. Perhaps this was due to his wrist injury. He finishes with one of the worst OPS totals of his career. My guess is that we cut ties with him.
4) Alexi Casilla - He was paid $1.7M this year and there is a club option for next season. He batted .214 this year with a sub 600 OPS. He was here for his glove though. I just can't picture the team again having Roberts, Flaherty, and Casilla together again, the bench is too weak. Since I think they'll re-sign Roberts and make Flaherty a super utility guy, I think Casilla will not be brought back.
5) Jason Pridie - A nice AAAA player who got brought up for a cup of coffee when Chris Dickerson was hurt at the end of the season. It was nice to reward Pridie for a good year but I think he's gone. He also has no options left.
6) Chris Snyder - Nice veteran catcher who mainly played in Norfolk. He (amazingly) still has options left at the age of 32. I think we'll bring him back and plant him right back in Norfolk as injury insurance (I think Clevenger is the back up to Wieters next year). Now, being a veteran, he may have an opt out clause like he did this year, but my best guess is he's with the organization in Norfolk next season.
7) Dan Johnson - AAAA player who was a September call up for us. I think we'll cut bait with him.
8) Scott Feldman - The Orioles like him and he pitched well for them after the trade (until his last start of the year). He made $6M this season and will probably get a multi-year offer. This is a tough one for me. I'll guess we are outbid for his services and Gausman comes into spring training as the favorite for the last starter spot.
9) Jason Hammel - He made $6.75M in a very disappointing year. There's no way he will be back.
10) Francisco Rodriguez - We traded Delmonico for him. He had a good year, but Buck never entrusted the late innings to him as he was mainly used as the 7th inning setup guy. He was cheap this year but the price figures to go up next season. My guess is he lands an MLB job somewhere else and he was purely a rental who cost us a very good prospect.
11) Tsuyoshi Wada - Came back from injury to have a decent, but not spectacular, season in Norfolk. He's getting paid over $4M and we have an option for him next season. My best guess is that we work something out for him to come back, but at Norfolk.
So, here's my Best Guess on Next Year's 25-man Roster:
C - Wieters
1B - Davis
2B - Roberts (predicting he re-signs)
SS - Hardy
3B - Machado
RF - Markakis
CF - Jones
LF - McLouth (predicting he re-signs)
DH - ??
Bench - Flaherty, Valencia, Urrutia, Clevenger
SP - Tillman
SP - Gonzalez
SP - Chen
SP - Norris
SP - Gausman
RP - O'Day
RP - Hunter
RP - Matusz
RP - Patton
RP - Stinson (pitched well, no options left)
RP - Britton (no options left)
CL - J. Johnson (that's one expensive closer)
Visit the Orioles Hangout Message Board