Baltimore Orioles Designate Alejandro De Aza for Assignment


There were some that follow the Baltimore Orioles who have been clamoring for a shakeup to the current team following some of the ugliest baseball during the Buck Showalter era and a dreadful 20-23 start.

You got your wish today.

The Orioles have reinstated Ryan Flaherty from the 15-day disabled list. That’s not the big news here. The shocker is that they have designated Alejandro De Aza for assignment. The Orioles made the announcement official on Twitter just after 2 p.m. today.

It’s no surprise that the move made was in the outfield. Showalter has been searching for a consistent duo to pair with Adam Jones, but no one has stepped up to take over those roles. Evidently, Showalter is tired of shuffling his players and parting with De Aza eliminates some of the clutter of players in the corner outfield.

De Aza, 31, hasn’t done well in 2015 after having an impressive September for the ball club last season. He has a line of .214/.277/.359 with three homers and two stolen bases in 2015, after hitting .293/.341/.537 with three home runs in 20 games with the Orioles last season.

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De Aza was tendered arbitration over the winter, and went through the arbitration hearing against the Orioles, only to lose to the team. He still received a $5 million salary, a hefty price for the lack of production the team has received this season. That very deal will make it likely that a team will not be willing to claim him off waivers, rather waiting until he becomes a free agent.

The move adds pressure to David Lough, Delmon Young and Travis Snider, hoping that one will take advantage of the situation and earn an everyday role. Steve Pearce will see additional time in the outfield now that Flaherty will return to second base. Pearce filled in admirably at second base, but Jimmy Paredes was the Orioles second baseman when they could not use the DH in Miami this past weekend.

Say whatever you want about Flaherty, but he is more valuable to the Orioles than De Aza. Flaherty is batting .250/.372/.500 in a limited sample size, but his defense is his calling card. With a team that seems to have an error on a nightly basis, cleaning up the infield is a must. Flaherty is hands down a much better infielder than Pearce, Paredes and Everth Cabrera.

The corresponding move should be a wake up call to the entire team because the youngsters have proven that they are ready and waiting in the minors. Recalling Steve Clevenger in place of Ryan Lavarnway was the first move made by the ball club yesterday, and De Aza might just be the second of several moves in the upcoming weeks. Kevin Gausman, Matt Wieters and Jonathan Schoop are all on the mend and should be back in Baltimore shortly. The Orioles are going to have make some interesting decisions.

The team cannot be happy with Brian Matusz, and with the recent performances of Oliver Drake, Tyler Wilson and Chaz Roe, the trade rumors might start circulating again. Only problem with that is Matusz hurt his trade value with the upcoming suspension, and that can’t make Dan Duquette happy.

De Aza and Lavarnway are likely the first of many moves that surprise us over the next few weeks. Hopefully, it lights a spark in this team and brings back the play that made the Baltimore Orioles the 2014 American League East Champions.

Next: Hits and Runs Hard To Come By For Orioles

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