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Donald Fehr

With Vargas fetching a four-year deal, what's next for the Orioles' free-agent pitching pursuit?

The Orioles’ hope of adding a free-agent pitcher took a bit of a hit Thursday when left-hander Jason Vargas signed a four-year, $32 million deal with the Kansas City Royals.

Vargas, 30, has been someone the Orioles have coveted for years — former pitching coach Rick Adair had Vargas in Seattle and loved the lefty. And so the Orioles made trade overtures in three different seasons to try and get Vargas, but never found a deal to their liking.

That the Orioles didn’t land Vargas in free agency shouldn’t be disappointing for the club, however. What should give the Orioles...