Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/9/11

The Baltimore Orioles officially introduced Dan Duquette as their General Manager in a newsconference yesterday. Duquette’s official title will be Executive Vice-President of Baseball Operations, whereas Andy MacPhail was the President of Baseball Operations. No matter how you look at it, MacPhail was the GM, as is Dan Duquette. One thing that I didn’t point out previously was that Duquette is the cousin of former Oriole executive Jim Duquette. So is this the biggest case of nepotism since John F. Kennedy tapped his brother Bobby to be the Attorney General? Not in the least; Jim no longer works for the Orioles. That aside, Duquette will being working in his staff immediately and hopes to have it in place in very short order.

So the question is what kind of splashes will Duquette make? Duquette was the GM of the Red Sox, and before that he was the GM of the Montreal Expos. In essence, he was relieved of his duties in Boston when the current ownership came into the picture in 2002. However he did put in place many of the pieces that we came to know (and hate!) as the Boston Red Sox. He brought Manny Ramirez and Pedro Martinez to the club, and drafted Kevin Youkilis among others. However I think that a better example is his short stint in Montreal. Duquette brought in the likes of Pedro Martinez and John Wetteland…pitchers. So can Oriole fans expect Duquette to go after pitching this offseason? Time wll tell of course, however I think that what Oriole fans can expect is to simply take Duquette at his word. In his presser yesterday, he freely admitted that the O’s didn’t have the resources that clubs such as NY and Boston have at their disposal. So that means that the O’s have to work harder and smarter.

That line in itself is the GM version of “coach-speak.” What does harder and smarter mean to the average fan sitting at home? That’s something to which I can’t speak; only time will tell us what that means. It may well indicate that the O’s aren’t going to get caught up in a bidding war for the services of Prince Fielder and others. Instead, perhaps the Orioles might invest in some free agents that might help the team just as much, but in other areas (pitching perhaps?). I have no idea if this is what will come to pass under Duquette, I’m just throwing it out there. I don’t think that we should expect the same 40-man roster with which the Orioles finished 2011 to be trotted out there on Opening Day of 2012 either. However I think that Duquette knows that it’s not about who you add in terms of skill so much as it’s often about who you add in terms of chemistry. Using an example from the NFL, did the Washington Redskins regrett signing Albert Haynesworth? Did the New England Patriots regrett trading for him? He’s a great player, but he doesn’t fit on a team. Duquette wants to ensure that doesn’t happen with the O’s.

Duquette said yesterday that he’d have his staff in place by the December 5th winter meetings, at which he’ll represent the Orioles. I would simply say to Oriole fans that they should be patient. If they don’t start signing people today or tomorrow, we have to give Duquette the benefit of the doubt given that he’s new. If they’ve made no moves in another two months or so, it’s time to start worrying.

Follow me on Twitter @DomenicVadala

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