Orioles comparing lefties in system to possible Rule 5 picks

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T.J. McFarland #66 of the Baltimore Orioles delivers a pitch in the fifth inning against the New York Yankees on May 8, 2015 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.

Asked at baseball's winter meetings whether the Orioles are interested in adding a left-handed reliever, Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said: "We have some other priorities ahead of that."

Left-hander Brian Matusz has served in relief for the past three-plus seasons and is in his final season before free agency. T.J. McFarland is another left-handed reliever, but the Orioles have used him mostly in a long-relief role.


Orioles manager Buck Showalter said the club was comparing some of the organization's current arms Tuesday to what could be available in Thursday's Rule 5 draft.

"I was looking at [C.J.] Riefenhauser and [Ashur] Tolliver and Chris Lee and, of course, Matusz and Donnie Hart and McFarland … [and] Tanner Scott," Showalter said. "We had a lot of fun watching him today. We're looking at Rule 5 guys and comparing them to some of the guys we've got. That's exciting to watch, to see them pitching. We like our options from within if something doesn't" happen.


Jones' charity continues

Orioles center fielder Adam Jones made a $75,000 donation, along with the Orioles Charitable Foundation, to the Webster Kendrick Boys & Girls Club in West Baltimore. The donation will help renovate and expand a technology center and lab at the facility.

This is the third Baltimore Boys & Girls Club that Jones has helped renovate. Over the past three years, he also has made sizable gifts to the Brooklyn O'Malley Boys & Girls Club and the Westport/Winans Homes Boys & Girls Club.

Last month, Jones received the players union's Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award for his on- and off-field contributions. He also received the Brooks Robinson Community Service Award from the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association this offseason.

Around the horn

Duquette said the Orioles have made their interest in retaining left-hander Wei-Yin Chen known — he is represented by agent Scott Boras, whom the club met with Tuesday — but Duquette said, "I'm not sure the market will allow that." Chen figures to get a deal in the four-year range, something the Orioles don't typically offer, but there hasn't been much buzz about him this week at winter meetings. "Chen had some good years with the team," Duquette said. "We made our interest clear in having Chen come back." … Despite the fact that the Orioles must keep top pitching prospect Dylan Bundy on the major league roster — he enters the season out of options — Duquette said the club still could select a pitcher in Thursday's Rule 5 draft. "We'll have to see how that develops," Duquette said. Because he has played in only 17 games since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2013, Bundy likely will slot as a reliever next season, at least initially. … The Orioles extended their agreement with Low-A Delmarva for two additional years, through the 2018 season, making their affiliation with the Shorebirds the second longest in the South Atlantic League.