Unless the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays go on a 25-game losing streak, it's safe to say the Orioles are out of it. As we approach mid-August, it's time for the Buck Showalter to find out exactly what he does and doesn't have going into next season.
That brings up the question: Who would you like to get a better look at these last two months of the season, and who are you ready to cut ties with?
We all knew Vladimir Guerrero was a one-year deal to begin with, but I think the O's have already gotten all they are going to get out of the future Hall of Famer. Sure we'll take the .274 batting average, but lower in the order. I know Andy MacPhail wants to get as much return as possible on his $8 million investment, but why keep batting him cleanup - especially when Mark Reynolds is hitting bombs into the upper deck lately? Guerrero's nine homers and 36 RBIs just aren't going to cut it batting fourth.
I still would like to see more of Josh Bell. I'm not sure if anybody has a good read on him.
Chris Davis intrigues me. I like his ability to go opposite field for power and his defense at first seems to be a real asset. I know Texas was reluctant to let him go in the Koji Uehara trade.
I'm warming up to the idea, however, of seeing Davis at third base and Reynolds at first long term. Many of Reynolds' errors this year weren't on fielding the ball. A majority happened on the transfer or throw. Based on his weekend performance filling in at first base, I think he could be a much better fielder if he just had to catch the ball.
For the record, I still would love to see the O's go after a free agent first baseman like Prince Fielder this offseason, although the probability of him coming to Baltimore is slim.
I made it no secret on this blog that I wanted to see Nolan Reimold get a chance. I believed in his power and his eye at the plate. I thought he could be a high on-base percentage guy with his hustle and ability to walk.
Well, Reimold has gotten a chance and hasn't done much with it. When Luke Scott went on the disabled list July 4, Reimold knew he'd get more playing time. He did - and right now he's batting just .214. The outfielder went 1-for-10 in the Toronto series over the weekend and was just 3-for-29 in his last nine games. Reimold has showed some power, hitting six home runs this year, but I believe even that number could be better.
I like Reimold but he's 27 years old. Granted, that's not old, but based on his rookie campaign he should be further along by now. Considering the O's other option in left (Felix Pie), I might start looking for an everyday left fielder in the offseason if I were this team's general manager.
As if it wasn't insinuated enough. Pie is on my list of failed experiments as well. He just makes too many bonehead mistakes. There's no questioning his raw ability, but I'm not sure that light bulb will ever go off.
Lastly, I truly have enjoyed covering Cesar Izturis over the past few years. He is a class act. Monday, when he went on the disabled list, I didn't think that was a bad move for the club. Not because I want to see Izturis hurt, but because the Orioles need to find out more about Blake Davis who has shown some glimpses of clutch hitting. He's someone the Orioles need to get a good read on especially with the uncertainty of Brian Roberts being healthy ever again.
Did I miss anyone?