Originally posted on B-More Birds Nest  |  Last updated 11/1/12
Yesterday, the Orioles made one contract move, as they exercised their $1 million option for right handed reliever Luis Ayala. Ayala – his inherited runner track record aside – was damn impressive out of the bullpen, pitching to a 2.64 ERA in 66 appearances. However, it was the option that the club declined that has Birdland all atwitter today. In a move that was widely expected, the club opted not to pick up the $11 million option on first baseman Mark Reynolds. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the 29-year old wont be back in 2013. In fact, Mark would prefer to stay. “I love playing in Baltimore. I have a lot of friends on the team. I love playing for Buck and I love being in the city. Hopefully, I’m in a win-win situation here so that if they do want me back, hopefully we can work something out and I’ll be back playing for Buck and the O’s.” The team can either take Reynolds to arbitration, or non-tender him and attempt to sign him as a free agent to a new contract. However, as Eduardo Encina points out, that may be risky if they really do want to keep him. Reynolds said Wednesday he’d have to test the waters if he was non-tendered, and even though I believe Reynolds is true in saying he likes playing in Baltimore, allowing him to become a free agent is a risk. The first baseman free-agent crop isn’t great. Carlos Lee is 36. Carlos Pena is 34. Both are coming off horrid seasons. James Loney’s stock has fallen dramatically. Adam LaRoche, coming off a Gold Glove season in which he hit a career-high 33 homers, will be the cream of the first-base crop if he doesn’t re-sign with the Nationals. Nick Swisher can play first, but he figures to get a multiyear deal and he might not be a fit for the Orioles’ clubhouse. So Reynolds might be one of the best available first basemen in the free-agent market, especially now that he’s established himself defensively at the position. While there aren’t too many teams looking for first basemen, the Orioles might be forced to offer a multi-year deal to retain Reynolds if they allow him to go on the market. Personally, I’d like to see the team bring Reynolds back. While some fans (and I count myself in this group sometimes in the heat of the moment during games) pull their hair out over his strikeouts, the fact remains that even this season – a down year for him power-wise – he still led the team in walks and had the second highest OBP of any regular (.335 to Nick Markakis’s .363). For a team that struggles mightily to get on base – the Birds were 11th in the AL in OBP – and whose GM is an OBP guy, jettisoning one of the few guys on your squad who knows how to take a walk probably isn’t the best way to improve. And if Mark is serious about wanting to say in Baltimore, I think we have to assume that he’s finally let go of his whole “I still want to play third base” thing, right? With Manny Machado and J.J. Hardy (sporting his first Gold Glove), the team is set on the left side of the infield. And as well as Reynolds played at first this season, one has to think that he’ll only get better. So, Mark Reynolds – come on back at say, $7-9 million per year for 3 seasons? I’ll take it. Plus, how can you not love this guy? (0:34)
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Five most anticipated September MLB call-ups
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Dwyane Wade’s cousin shot and killed in Chicago

NFL tries to reduce kick returns, promptly causes more kick returns

San Francisco Giants inching closer to a record they really don’t want

Clint Dempsey undergoing testing for irregular heartbeat

Troubling details emerge from Jeremy Jeffress' DWI arrest

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Chargers would welcome Joey Bosa if he signed contract

Falcons rookie Keanu Neal needs surgery on knee

Jerry Jones unhappy with Ezekiel Elliott's dispensary visit

Texas Tech using fake Twitter accounts to track players

Nike creates custom Air Jordan shoes in tribute to Craig Sager

Browns wanted ‘second-round pick and then some’ for Gordon

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

Marshall’s first impression of Fitzpatrick: ‘He was terrible’

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Six worst quarterback situations in the NFL

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

A look at 2016 college football conference changes

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker