According to an industry source, the Orioles inquired about Overbay last week while he was still with the Arizona Diamondbacks and have made their interest known again after he was released Monday.
Several other teams are reportedly courting the 35-year-old Washington state native, including the San Francisco Giants and Cincinnati Reds.
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In 45 games this season with the Diamondbacks, Overbay hit .292 with two homers, 10 RBIs and a .367 on-base percentage in 96 at-bats. The left-handed batter is a lifetime .271 hitter (.354 on-base percentage) in a 12-season, big-league career.
But with 24-year-old Paul Goldschmidt entrenched as the Diamondbacks’ every day first baseman, Overbay became expendable.
Because his salary is guaranteed by the Diamondbacks, any team that signs Overbay will only have to pay the prorated veteran minimum. With money not an issue, Overbay is expected to select a contending team for which he could immediately play a significant amount. He reportedly does not want to go to the minors.
The Orioles could be a fit, given that five different players have started at least one game at first base for them this year.
Although not the swift defender he was during his prime with the Milwaukee Brewers and Toronto Blue Jays, Overbay would still be considered a defensive upgrade at first, where Mark Reynolds is the current starter. Reynolds has been playing much better recently after a rough initial transition from third base, but he is batting just .211 with eight homers in 85 games.