For much of the off-season we wondered which teams would give in and surrender compensatory draft picks to sign free agents like Ubaldo Jimenez, Ervin Santana, Kendrys Morales, and Nelson Cruz.
The single team that has taken that plunge in recent weeks is the Orioles with their decisions to sign Jimenez and Cruz. Might those two decisions have loosened things up such that they could go all in and add yet another guy from that list in Santana?
Speaking with Roch Kubatko of MASN, manager Buck Showalter acknowledged just such a possibility. Depending on Santana’s willingness to lower his asking price, the Orioles might be able to snag him as the regular season approaches. Kubatko notes the following about the price range that the Orioles would be comfortable with:
From what I’ve gathered, the Orioles were comfortable offering him a three-year deal in the $30 million range, but Santana’s camp kept trying to squeeze a fourth year out of them. He reportedly is seeking around $50 million, which doesn’t interest the Orioles.
Talks appeared to be dead, but how long is he willing to remain on the market?”
That’s the question for a number of teams, and if Santana’s number drops to three years, $30 million then the Orioles surely will not be alone in their efforts to sign him at that price. Otherwise it will remain a question of whether the Orioles or any other team change their mind and pony up $50 million for his services.