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HomeUncategorizedMLB Rumors: Orioles Targeting FA Relievers Josh Hader, Craig Kimbrel, Chapman, More

MLB Rumors: Orioles Targeting FA Relievers Josh Hader, Craig Kimbrel, Chapman, More

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 20: Josh Hader #71 of the San Diego Padres reacts after defeting the Colorado Rockies 3-2 in  a game at PETCO Park on September 20, 2023 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The Baltimore Orioles are reportedly seeking improvements to their bullpen this offseason, and they have a few names in mind.

According to Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the Orioles “seek a back-end reliever and have contacted Maryland product and ex-Oriole farmhand Josh Hader plus Craig Kimbrel, Aroldis Chapman and Jordan Hicks.”

Heyman also listed the Orioles among the teams that “are believed in the trade market for starters.” Baltimore reportedly tried to trade for Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Dylan Cease and could revisit that pursuit this offseason.

The Orioles had a solid bullpen in 2023, as its collective 3.55 ERA during the regular season was the fifth-lowest in the majors. Closer Felix Bautista tied for eighth in MLB with 33 saves. Adding any of the players Heyman listed as his setup man would give Baltimore a dangerous combination.

Hader also tied for eighth with 33 saves for the San Diego Padres. He’s a strikeout machine with 85 in 56.1 innings of work, and his 1.28 ERA was the second-lowest of his career. However, Heyman noted that Hader “may be a bit pricey” for the Orioles.

Chapman, who split the 2023 season between the Kansas City Royals and the World Series champion Texas Rangers, enjoyed a bounce-back year with a 3.09 ERA, his lowest since 2020. Kimbrel had a 3.26 ERA and 23 saves for the Philadelphia Phillies. Hicks split the season between the Toronto Blue Jays and St. Louis Cardinals and had a 3.29 ERA.

The Orioles finished with the best record in the American League at 101-61 this past season. They will be seeking a better ending in 2024 after being eliminated in the ALDS.

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