Revisiting the heyday of department stores and five-and-dimes

The Freel Dilemma

That sounds like a great title for a Robert Ludlum spy novel, but it's just the issue facing the Orioles now that utilityman Ryan Freel is through with his injury rehabilitation assignment. The club has to return him to the active roster in the next day or so or find some other club that needs a $4 million utility guy.

Andy MacPhail has been calling around to guage interest in Freel, who has expressed frustration with his lack of playing time and seems to be the odd guy out with Lou Montanez moving past him on the depth chart and Triple-A outfielder Nolan Reimold trying to force his way onto the major league club.

Can't imagine the Orioles will be able to find anyone to take that whole salary, but they already saved millions in the exchange for Ramon Hernandez and would probably be happy to recoup a million or two of his guarantee.

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