To date, this has been a very quiet offseason for the Baltimore Orioles. The club made three Rule 5 Draft selections and handed out some minor-league contracts, and that's about it. They've been connected to a few free agent pitchers but have yet to land one. In fact, the biggest news surrounding the Orioles has involved who they might subtract, not who they might add. Manny Machado's name has been involved in trade rumors for weeks, Zach Britton was said to be on the block as well before he blew out his Achilles during an offseason workout. Obviously the Britton trade talks are on hold now. The top priority for the O's this offseason is adding rotation help. Their starting rotation right now is Kevin Gausman, Dylan Bundy, and three question marks. So perhaps it should not be a surprise then that, according to Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports, the Orioles approached Britton earlier this year to gauge his interest in returning to the rotation. From Kubatko: I've been asked countless times about the possibility of the Orioles making Britton a starter again. He was approached with the idea earlier this year to gauge his interest, according to multiple sources, and he preferred to remain in the bullpen, where he made the All-Star team in 2016 and placed fourth in Cy Young voting in the American League. There are people in the organization who continue to support the idea -- I was told a couple of officials like it "a lot" -- though the surgery tosses a giant wrench in the plan. Others wonder how he'd hold up physically and believe, the way he's wired, that closing is a better fit. It also suits his repertoire. Britton, 30, came up through the minors as a starting pitcher and made 46 starts for the O's from 2011-13, including 28 during his rookie season in 2011.
Zach Britton as a starter, Orioles? That's a bad idea for several reasons
CBS Sports | Dec 31