xml:space="preserve">

Baseball's winter meetings wrap up Thursday, and Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail will return to Baltimore with a new left side of the infield and an old buddy in the bullpen.

The Orioles are close to finalizing a deal for shortstop J.J. Hardy (and utility man Brendan Harris) for a pair of minor-league relievers (I like that trade a lot more than the proposed deal for Jason Barlett). The move will come three days after the Orioles acquired third baseman Mark Reynolds.

Advertisement

There is no question MacPhail upgraded those two positions this week, but he still has some work to do. For starters, the Orioles need some new relievers to fill out the bullpen, even after they brought back Koji Uehara with a one-year deal (awkward high fives all around for that one).

The Orioles need a first baseman, too, and their top options right now are Adam LaRoche and Derrek Lee since they missed out on guys such as Adam Dunn, Paul Konerko and Carlos Pena. I think they should go after Brewers slugger Prince Fielder -- but not if he won't talk a contract extension now or if the Brewers are demanding young starter Brian Matusz in return.

The Reynolds deal was a significant ripple, but it doesn't look as if the O's will make that big splashy move many fans were hoping for.

You tell me:

What can MacPhail do this winter to satisfy you?

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement