Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/11/13
The General Managers meetings begin today in Orlando, Fla. and Dan Duquette will initiate some talk on potential trades. He’ll also talk free agents, and perhaps discuss a contract extension for Matt Wieters with Scott Boras. It appears that Boras and Wieters aren’t eager to agree on a contract extension with the Orioles. It’s still two years until Wieters can be a free agent, but according to some of the readers, the Orioles should think about trading Wieters now. FoxSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal mentioned the idea in a weekend piece, and I think it’s one that shouldn’t be broached…yet. With many star players negotiating extensions before free agency, the quality of the market hasn’t been terribly strong the last two winters. But, it elevates some of the secondary free agents into primary ones. Are Shin-Soo Choo, Ervin Santana and Brian McCann worth five years and $100 million? But, they’re among the best players available. If Wieters is on the market in 2015, he’ll have plenty of suitors, and if that group is like the last two years’, Wieters can be one of the top five available free agents. Despite some disappointing offensive numbers, Wieters’ defense is superb. Fewer runners even attempt to run on him each year, and trading him would harm the Orioles’ stellar defense. Wieters is one of the principal reasons Chris Tillman had a breakout season. Many times, Tillman would struggle in the first inning or two, then Wieters would get him on track, and he’d dominate. Changing catchers with a young and relatively inexperienced staff that relies heavily on Wieters is a bad idea. If the Orioles are convinced that Wieters is determined to test the open market in 2015, there’s no rush to trade him. After 14 forgettable seasons, the Orioles finally have put together a contending team, and a Wieters trade could remove lots of the goodwill earned the past two years. After 2012, Orioles fans were confident that they’d have at least two more years with the core of the ballclub—Wieters, Chris Davis, J.J. Hardy, Adam Jones, Manny Machado and Nick Markakis—intact. Even if the Orioles traded Wieters now, they couldn’t trade him to the Yankees or Red Sox, two teams that could afford him. The Orioles would want to bring back another catcher and major league ready prospects, and there aren’t many teams that could offer them equal value.
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