According to industry sources, the Orioles and Braves have had multiple conversations about Atlanta starter Kenshin Kawakami, who is owed $6.67 million in the final season of a three-year deal.
Kawakami, 35, was 1-10 with a 5.15 ERA in 18 games, 16 starts, for the Braves in 2010, and also pitched five games in the minors last season. In his first year in the United States, Kawakami was 7-12 with a 3.86 ERA in 32 games (25 starts).
The Braves are looking to shed payroll while making room for their young starters while the Orioles would like to add a veteran to help take some pressure away from their young stable of pitchers.
Atlanta would likely pick up part of Kawakami’s 2011 salary. This isn’t the first time the Orioles have had interest in the right-hander. When he became a free agent and entered major league baseball in the 2008 offseason, the Orioles were highly intrigued but instead signed Koji Uehara to a two-year deal.
Uehara is a free agent but is good friends with Kawakami, so perhaps if Kawakami came to the Orioles, he would be another selling point in luring Uehara back.
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