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Baltimore Orioles: As Life in the AL East Turns

If you were like me yesterday, when you found out the New York Yankees won the bidding war for Masahiro Tanaka, you likely left out a groan.  While in some ways the deal may help the Orioles as they seek to attract a pitcher, the reality is the Yankees’ rotation looks a lot more formidable on paper.

Going into Tuesday, you could have argued the Orioles’ rotation was middle of the pack in the AL East.  Let’s face it, the Tampa Bay Rays and Boston Red Sox rotations stack up better than the Orioles.

The Toronto Blue Jays, with R.A. Dickey, Brandon Morrow, Mark Buehrle, J.A. Happ and either Esmil Rogers or Ricky Romero, looks like a decent rotation on paper.  But if last year’s performance says anything, it likely won’t be.

Then there is the New York Yankees, with Tanaka, Hiroki Kuroda, C.C. Sabathia, Ivan Nova and Michael Pineda.  Yep, no longer can argue the Orioles’ rotation is better.

Even if the Orioles go out and add Bronson Arroyo or A.J. Burnett, most prognosticators will argue their rotation is still the weakest in the AL East.  If they get Ervin Santana or Matt Garza, I think they rank ahead of the Blue Jays, however.

The reality is, that last paragraph had two ifs.  But in my mind and the mind of many fans, unless Kevin Gausman is going to pitch his way on to the roster, something needs to be done to shore up the last spot in the rotation.  I don’t think Liam Hendriks is the answer.

As I have been repeating for months now, it is all about the pitching.  But with the Yanks’ acquisition of Tanaka, that need is all the more apparent.

With players set to report in just under three weeks, it is time for Dan Duquette to get to work.

Tags: Baltimore Orioles Kevin Gausman Masahiro Tanaka R.A. Dickey

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