I check the papers, read the rumors, scour the message boards and hope that today might be the day. Bobby Abreu. Pat Burrell. That kid the Rockies got at first base. Miggey for Manny. Daniel Cabrera for bag of chips. Just trade someone. Anyone.
But, ah, how soon we forget -- the Orioles have never been too good at this trade deadline thing. The name Glenn Davis mean anything to you? It does if you're an O's fan.
So, too, do the names Brook Fordyce, Jose Leon, Chris Richard, Craig Lefferts (an Aug. 31 deadline acquisition in '92), Kurt Ainsworth, Luis Rivera, Fernando Lunar and last year's big present under the tree, Eric Byrnes. To stick with the Christmas analogy, the Orioles have done a fair job of shooting their eye out at the MLB trade deadline.
In fairness, I should mention that Baltimore acquired Bobby Bonilla in exchange for Damon Buford and Alex Ochoa during the 1996 season, Eddie Murray for Kent Mercker a year later, and Melvin Mora and other for Mike Bordick in 2000.
So there … it hasn't been all bad. Just more bad than good, though I'm sure there are plenty I'm forgetting. Feel free to remind me.
The O's aren't alone in botching deadline deals. Check out ESPN Page 2's story on the worst trade deadline deals in history from a few years ago. Somehow the infamous Davis deal -- Curt Schilling, Steve Finley and Pete Harnisch to the Astros for Davis in 1991 – was left off this list, but it did top an ESPN readers' poll of the worst deadline trades ever. Nice to see the O's get some respect.
One you won't find on either list is the deal in which the Giants sent Francisco Liriano, Joe Nathan and Boof Bonser to the Twins in exchange for A.J. Pierzynski. Yowza.
So what of the Orioles' trade prospects this year? You can bet they're working the phones, but as of now, all seems quiet. Burrell won't waive his no-trade clause to come here, and it's unlikely Abreu would either, to say nothing of the Orioles' willingness to eat the sizable salary of either Phillies outfielder. The O's remain one of several teams interested in Rockies slugger Ryan Shealy, but their offer of LaTroy Hawkins reportedly wasn't enough, and Colorado's asking price of Hayden Penn was understandably too steep.
So for now, we wait to learn the fate of Hawkins, Rodrigo Lopez, Javy Lopez, Kevin Millar, Jeff Conine, Bruce Chen and any other players the team might be dangling as trade bait.
I might regret saying this, but I, for one, can hardly wait.
In on-field news, the Orioles have yet to announce a starter for Saturday's game against the White Sox, but my money's on Chen, who hasn't allowed a baserunner in 3 1/3 innings over his past two appearances (hey, it's something). Penn and Russ Ortiz are also options, if the O's still consider Ortiz an option at this point. He failed to record an out while giving up six earned runs in an emergency start at Tampa Bay over the weekend, a nice no-out performance by the O's so-called "no-risk" signing.
This week's matchups
- Today – O's (Kris Benson-R) at Royals (Mark Redman-L), 8:10 p.m.
- Wednesday – O's (Adam Loewen-L) at Royals (Jimmy Gobble-L), 8:10 p.m.
- Thursday – O's (Rodrigo Lopez-R) at Royals (Runelvys Hernandez-R), 8:10 p.m.
- Friday – White Sox (Freddy Garcia-R) at O's (Erik Bedard-L), 7:05 p.m.
- Saturday – White Sox (Jon Garland-R) at O's (Bruce Chen-L), 4:35 p.m.
- Sunday – White Sox (Javier Vazquez-R) at O's (Benson), 1:35 p.m.