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Saturday, December 21, 2013

Orioles rumors: Fernando Rodney, Chris Perez, Jonathan Papelbon

By on 12/21/2013 04:00:00 PM

It appeared the Baltimore Orioles had found their next closer, as the team was nearing an agreement with free agent Grant Balfour. However, the deal fell through with the right-hander. While the reasoning for the non-agreement is currently being debated, one thing is clear; the O's are left in need of a closer. According to Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports, Baltimore's closer for the 2014 campaign will likely be free agent Fernando Rodney or someone already on the team's current roster.
Kubatko notes that the Orioles are not one of the teams interested in former Cleveland Indians closer Chris Perez. The O's have also been tied to Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Jonathan Papelbon, but Kubatko reports they are not interested in eating as much salary as would be required.
If the Orioles decide to go with someone in-house to fill the role left vacant by the trade that sent Jim Johnson to the Oakland Athletics, they have several candidates. Tommy Hunter would appear to be one of the favorites, as would Darren O'Day, Brian Matusz and Ryan Webb. Troy Patton would be another candidate, but he was recently suspended 25 games for his use of amphetamines.

Rodney was an All-Star closer for the Tampa Bay Rays in 2012, but his results were more erratic last season. Over 66 2/3 innings last season, the 36-year-old posted an ERA and WHIP of 3.38 and 1.335.


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