MLB Season Preview: Baltimore Orioles

Is Manny Machado the next Brooks Robinson?


The Baltimore Orioles started off 2013 in solid fashion, but a less than stellar second-half did not allow the club to return to the postseason for a second consecutive year. A shocking down year from Matt Wieters was balanced out by an amazing season from Chris Davis – who smacked 53 HRs and 138 RBI. The O’s went 20-31 in one-run games,  so they’ll need to figure out how to win the close ones in 2014 if they want a shot at toppling the defending champion Red Sox in the AL East.

Off-season transactions:

1/14 – Signed OF Delmon Young

1/15 – Signed RHP Alfredo Aceves

2/19 – Signed RHP Ubaldo Jimenez

2/24 – Signed OF Nelson Cruz

3/4 – Signed LHP Johan Santana

(The Orioles did not re-sign Scott Feldman, Brian Roberts and Nate McLouth)

Always hurts to see a guy like Brian Roberts leave the team after a successful 13-year career in Baltimore, but it looks like the decision was made from the Orioles side to move on. Nelson Cruz could be a big coup for the team, getting him at a discount after he had to serve a 50-game suspension for steroids last season. Cruz hit .266/.327/.503 for Texas in 2013, and you can expect something close to that this year. Ubaldo Jimenez figures to jump to the top of the rotation right away, while Johan Santana was a low risk-high reward gamble that could pay off big time for the O’s.

2014 Lineup:

  • Matt Wieters, C
  • Chris Davis, 1B
  • Ryan Flaherty, 2B
  • Manny Machado, 3B
  • J.J. Hardy, SS
  • Nick Markakis, RF
  • Adam Jones, CF
  • Nick Reimold, LF
  • Nelson Cruz, DH


  1. Ubaldo Jimenez
  2. Miguel Gonzalez
  3. Chris Tillman
  4. Bud Norris
  5. Wei-Yin Chen

Closer: Tommy Hunter (?)

This team in another division could be a frontrunner, but not in the AL East. I would guess a .500 season for Showalter’s crew, but it all depends on what we get out of the Yankees and Jays this season.  I’m going to guess the O’s win 80 games in 2014.