Losing ground in the divisional race, the Orioles are looking for waiver wire trades according to a report from Buster Olney (ESPN Insider). Unfortunately for them though, the Yankees have “been aggressive in making [waiver] claims” which has limited the Orioles’ ability.
With just three days remaining for the Orioles to add players to their roster who would be able to play in the postseason, the scramble is on. However, the Yankees—who are lower in the standings—have priority on waiver claims. That means that any player put on waivers—including revocable ones—must first pass through every team lower in the standings than the Orioles in order for the Orioles to be able to work out a deal.
The Orioles were in first place in the AL East as recently as August 12. However, a record of 6-9 has not only allowed the Blue Jays to claim first, but the Red Sox have overtaken them as well. Remarkably, the Yankees sit just 6.5 games back of the Blue Jays in fourth place. Deemed sellers at the deadline, the Yankees have gained some ground and blocking the Orioles from making deals could bolster their Wild Card prospects.
The Orioles begin a series Monday evening against the first-place Blue Jays that could have major postseason implications. The team has been getting by with sub-standard pitching for the entire season and it seems to be coming to the fore down the stretch.
Through August, the Orioles starters rank below the league average in ERA, FIP, and xFIP. More specifically, the recent struggles of Chris Tillman, Yovani Gallardo, and the newly-acquired Wade Miley might be leading Dan Duquette and the rest of the Orioles’ front office to look for pitching on the waiver wire.
That need isn’t especially difficult to decipher though, and the Yankees—and every team that thinks they’re in contention—are likely also looking for available pitching help for a postseason push.
The Orioles were unable to make much happen prior the non-waiver trade deadline at the beginning of August, only acquiring Miley and Steve Pearce. The team didn’t have much farm depth from which to deal though, and this predicament is largely their own doing.