Going Underground Posted October 30, 2015 Share Posted October 30, 2015 Who really knows? I still think the Orioles sign someone that surprises people.. Qualifying-offer possibility: Definite Prospects heading into free agency: Tremendous. In his fourth year in the majors he spent the previous four seasons in the Japan Central League Chen posted his lowest big league ERA and the seventh-best mark in the American League among qualifying pitchers. Because he signed a major league deal coming out of Japan, the Taiwan native isn't required to wait six seasons for free agency. He'll hit the market at 30, younger than most of the other free-agent left-handed starters. Chen signed a three-year deal in January 2012 with a team option for 2015, an incredibly club-friendly pact that cost the Orioles roughly $15.7 million. Over his four years in Baltimore, Chen was 46-32 with a 3.72 ERA, and in three of his four seasons, he won at least 11 games, made at least 31 starts and pitched 185-plus innings. The deal is arguably the best move of Duquette's tenure. As for Chen, he fit in really well with the Orioles and has said it would be difficult to leave his friends and the only Major League Baseball team he has known. He'll also be saddled with a one-year, $15.8 million qualifying offer from the Orioles, which he'll reject, but it could limit his suitors. Teams that sign him must forfeit a compensatory first- or second-round draft pick to the Orioles. Also, it shouldn't be discounted that Chen was miffed by the Orioles' decision to send him to the minors in June as part of a roster crunch after he had thrown eight scoreless innings in his previous outing. Chen had a minor league option remaining, and the Orioles were giving him some extra rest and keeping him away from the Toronto Blue Jays' tough lineup, but the interruption in his routine was unwelcome. Orioles decision-makers have played it off as no big deal, but several club sources say Chen hasn't forgotten that episode. Dan Connolly's scale of return: 1 http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/blog/bs-sp-orioles-wei-yin-chen-free-agent-1031-20151030-story.html Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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