Brian Roberts -- a two-time All-Star second baseman -- is set to enter free agency at the end of the season, unless the Orioles sign him to an extension before then. As of now, they haven't made significant progress. According to Roberts, he doesn't want to discuss an extension during the season -- citing the popular "distraction" reason -- so the clock is ticking for the O's. Reportedly the Orioles have offered the speedy switch-hitter a multi-year deal worth around $10 million per season, but that's not good enough.
"We certainly haven't made any progress recently, but neither side has closed the door," said Roberts' agent, Mark Pieper.
You know what happens if he doesn't sign an extension before opening day, right? Cue up the trade rumors. Woo hoo!
Honestly, I don't even understand why the Orioles wouldn't just trade Roberts at this point. He's going to be 32 at the start of 2010. Do the Orioles really want to pay this guy upwards of $12 million a season for probably the next four or five, when his game partially relies upon speed? They probably can't complete with the Blue Jays this season, let alone the Yankees, Red Sox, or Rays.
Therefore, it's only logical to start building around Nick Markakis and Adam Jones. Deal Roberts and net as many prospects -- who are near major league ready, none of this class-A crap -- and prepare for a 2012 run. By then both Jones and Markakis will be full-fledged stars with veteran leadership capabilities. And Roberts will be making $12 million a year as a 34 year-old second baseman.
Brian Roberts Not Close to a Contract Extension in Baltimore originally appeared on MLB FanHouse on Thu, 08 Jan 2009 16:00:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.