O's fans watch while AL East turns

O's fans watch while AL East turns
December 8, 2013, 11:45 am
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After two seasons of seeing their team as a true contender in the American League East, Orioles fans may be feeling some uncomfortable déjà vu right now.

It hasn’t been that long ago that, each offseason, other clubs in the division would make big moves while the also-ran O’s were spectators. So far, the world champion Red Sox have re-signed big bat Mike Napoli, while the Yankees have added free agents Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran. To be sure, each has suffered significant departures — Robinson Cano from the Yankees and Ellsbury and Jarrod Saltalamacchia from the Red Sox — but they’re adding significant players, too.

The Orioles, meanwhile, have traded closer Jim Johnson and lost starter Scott Feldman and outfielder Nate McLouth to free agency.

How will O’s fans feel if club vice president Dan Duquette returns from this week’s winter meetings without having done anything to improve the roster? It’s hard to believe that everyone will feel better because of the additions of outfielder Francisco Peguero and second baseman Jemile Weeks.

You can argue that Johnson, Feldman and McLouth no longer were the right players at the right price for the Orioles. You can also argue that Duquette has proven himself adept at building a contending team in Baltimore without adding big names.

But if the O’s do nothing in Orlando, Fla., you also can’t blame fans if they have an unsettling feeling about their favorite team.