2014 record: 96-66, 1st place in AL East
Manager: Buck Showalter
Estimated 2015 payroll: $115 million
Key additions: OF Delmon Young, RP Jason Garcia, C J.P. Arencibia, LHP Scott Barnesa
Key losses: OF Nick Markakis, OF Nelson Cruz, LHP Andrew Miller, C Nick Hundley
LF Alejandro De Aza
3B Manny Machado
CF Adam Jones
1B Chris Davis
RF Steve Pearce
SS J.J. Hardy
DH Delmon Young
C Matt Wieters
2B Jonathan Schoop
RHP Chris Tillman
LHP Wei-Yin Chen
RHP Bud Norris
RHP Miguel Gonzalez
RHP Kevin Gausman
CL Zach Britton
RHP Darren O'Day
RHP Tommy Hunter
Biggest Loss - Nelson Cruz:
Cruz signed a 4-year $57 million dollar contract through the 2018 season with the Seattle Mariners. Cruz is one of only seven players to hit more then 20+ home runs in the last six seasons. Cruz anchored Baltimore's lineup with Chris Davis is almost a season long slump and Wieters going down with an elbow injury Cruz stepped up big. The 34-year-old outfielder, who was suspended 50 games in 2013 for his connection to the Biogenesis scandal, hit a career-best 40 home runs in 159 games last season for the Orioles. The three-time All-Star also had hit .271 with a .525 slugging percentage, .859 OPS, 32 doubles and 108 RBI in his only season with Baltimore.
Biggest Acquisition - J.P. Arencibia:
Veteran catcher J.P. Arencibia signed a minor-league deal with the Orioles this past week. With Matt Wieters uncertain health status, the Orioles were in search of catching depth. They were unable to re-sign free agent Nick Hundley, who left for the Rockies on a two-year deal. Arencibia brings catching depth, even though his defense behind the plate is suspect and aside from 20-homer power, his hitting is perhaps even worse. He’s a career .207 hitter with a .658 OPS and ghastly 462/84 K/BB ratio in 443 games, but with the Orioles lack of moves, I rank J.P. as their best pick up.
Projected Finish: With the AL East lacking pitching, the Orioles line-up should do just fine, even with the losses in Nelson Cruz and Nick Markakis. If Machado, Wieters, Davis, Jones, Hardy and Pearce produce, then this team could give the Red Sox a run for their money.
Baseball is,was, and always will be the greatest game in the world
Jake Wesley is now the only writer for MLB_NL_AL.com all of these articles are ether based on facts and pieces of his opinion.