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01-30-2013 08:02 AM #1
Encina: O's like Lohse if price comes down?Lohse, though, fits a little better for the Orioles. Boras and Duquette obviously talked last week while hammering out the Jurrjens deal, and surely Lohse's name (and likely Bourn's) came up. The Orioles could use a veteran atop the rotation, and Lohse is a sinkerballer who really has re-invented himself -- with great results -- the past two years.
Lohse, 34, followed a 2011 campaign in which he was 14-8 with a 3.39 ERA in 30 regular season starts for the eventual World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals with the best season of his career in 2012 -- 16-3 record, a 2.86 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP in a career-best 211 innings for the Cardinals.
Critics say it was a career year and you can't expect him to keep improving at age 34 and beyond. But Lohse supporters say he finally relied more on his sinker than any other pitch in the past two years, and that he is one of those guys who took a little longer to figure things out.
Lohse made nearly $12 million last year and is represented by Boras. He will not come cheap. And if he is forced to settle for a one-year contract, it won't be in Baltimore, where he'd have to pitch half his games at Camden Yards and a chunk of them against the AL East.
Plus, Lohse, like Bourn (and Adam LaRoche), would cost the Orioles their first-round draft pick next year, and Duquette is on record saying how important those picks are to him. Throw in the fact that the Orioles haven't doled out a contract longer than three years or more than $22.5 million to a true, free-agent starter in club history, and you can pretty much forget about Lohse.
Yet I am still writing about him. Why (besides it's a slow news week so far)?
Because every time I ask anyone in the Orioles' organization about Lohse, they say, "We like him, but not for what it is going to cost."
But what if that cost comes down dramatically?
That's where it would get intriguing. Honestly, Lohse will never be an "undervalued asset," like Duquette loves, but, given his past two seasons, Lohse has become somewhat underrated.
Because he doesn't throw hard, because he is older, because he battled injuries before 2011 and because he has a career ERA that's at 4.45, Lohse is never going to be considered in the upper echelon of starters.
But his past two seasons belong in that category. So maybe he ends up being more affordable than originally thought.
All that said, Boras rarely misreads the market when it comes to his top free agents -- remember last year when so many thought Prince Fielder would have to settle? -- so I don't see the cost dropping dramatically, even at this juncture of the offseason.
But if it did, Lohse definitely would strengthen the Orioles' staff.
As always, the question to ask is, at what price?
Last edited by ChaosLex; 01-30-2013 at 08:06 AM.
01-30-2013 08:28 AM #2
Not going to happen. We are too cheap even if price does come down. Sorry.
01-30-2013 08:28 AM #3
01-30-2013 08:52 AM #4
01-30-2013 08:53 AM #5
- Join Date
- Jun 2006
I don't like the idea of signing a guy who was significantly below league average his entire career who all of a sudden has an epiphany at age 32 and all of a sudden becomes an ace. Obviously, other teams don't either, otherwise he'd be signed by now.
Take him away from St. Louis pitching coach, and who knows how he'll be...
01-30-2013 09:00 AM #6
Even recently his xFIP and SIERA have been in the 4.00-ish range. I'm not convinced that once he leaves St. Louis he's going to be ace-like at all. I think he'll be closer to Joe Saunders than Justin Verlander. He might be a sinkerballer, but he's not particularly ground-ball oriented. His G/F rates are pretty average.
And I suspect the rest of the league sees all the same things, and that's why he hasn't signed. He wants to be paid $15M+ a year, and nobody quite believes he's going to be anything like that good.
Whenever I see his name I start thinking of Wayne Garland and Ross Grimsley.
01-30-2013 09:07 AM #7Plus Members since 4/12 Major Leagues
- Join Date
- Jan 2010
- Clermont, FL
01-30-2013 09:08 AM #8
01-30-2013 09:18 AM #9
Would Loshe take 1 year + option. If the Os can get him for the right price, get it done.
01-30-2013 09:33 AM #10
- Join Date
- Jul 2005
The problem is, the further the price drops (at least in years), the less sense it makes to give up a draft pick for one year of a guy. So while he might end up taking a 1/10 or 1/12 type of deal, is it worth it to give up the draft pick?
For a guy like Bourn, who would probably decline a qualifying offer again next year (so you'd essentially get back the pick you lost), it might make sense. For Lohse, who would almost certainly not make the mistake of turning down a qualifying offer again, it makes a lot less sense.
01-30-2013 09:36 AM #11
I'd like an Audi if it's price comes down.
01-30-2013 10:01 AM #12
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
Would be nice.. but not likely.
01-30-2013 10:36 AM #13Plus Member Hall of Fame
- Join Date
- Sep 2003
- New Jersey
01-30-2013 10:43 AM #14
01-30-2013 11:17 AM #15