Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Rodrigo Lopez, 2004 Fleer Tradition #165

The Orioles added a veteran starting pitcher this week, inking former Rangers and Athletics righthander Justin Duchscherer to a one-year deal that guarantees $1.1 million if he's on the Opening Day roster and promises a few extra million if he reaches performance-based incentives. This is just the kind of deal they should be making. Very little money ventured on a talented pitcher (two-time All-Star, 3.13 ERA, 1.14 WHIP) who is 32 years old - not yet in that fossilized Steve Trachsel/Kevin Millwood territory. They're buying low on a guy who has missed most of the past two and a half seasons because of injuries and personal issues, and if they can't get a full season out of him, there are a few young arms like Jake Arrieta/Chris Tillman (whichever is the odd man out for the #5 starter spot) and Zach Britton ready to step in. I wasn't keen on adding another starter with all of the developing pitchers at the top of the organization, but this is the way to do it.

On the other end of the spectrum, the Braves signed Rodrigo Lopez to a minor-league deal with a spring training invite earlier this week. He's supposed to battle for the final spot in the Atlanta rotation at age 35, coming off of 200 innings of 5.00 ERA, 37-home run ball for Arizona. Good luck in the N.L. East, Rodrigo.

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