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Grant Balfour
Nick Markakis' departure from Orioles hard to digest for several reasons
Nick Markakis' departure from Orioles hard to digest for several reasons

Orioles fans still are undoubtedly reeling this morning from Wednesday’s news that the team’s longest-tenured player, right fielder Nick Markakis, is leaving Baltimore after agreeing to terms on a four-year, $44 million deal with the Atlanta Braves. This one is surely tough to digest, especially knowing that Markakis -- a homegrown Oriole who spent nine years here and was one of the franchise’s most recognizable players -- wanted to remain in Baltimore. The Orioles were confident early in the offseason that they would be able to sign Markakis, so they didn't make him a qualifying offer. There also was some concern that he would take the qualifying offer, which...

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