Roch Around the Clock

November 19, 2006|By ROCH KUBATKO | ROCH KUBATKO,Sun Reporter

Orioles vice president Jim Duquette was nice enough to call into the MASN Playmakers show after his flight from Naples, Fla., delayed because of the weather, finally made a bumpy landing at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport.

When I asked about reports that the Orioles were in the running to sign Barry Bonds, Duquette dismissed them as "one of those rumors," as I figured.

"Right now, it's not an area we're focusing on."

Revisiting the Jaret Wright trade, Duquette estimated that the right-hander would have received $7 million to $8 million per year, as part of a multi-year contract, on the free-agent market. He also repeated that three teams have contacted the Orioles about Wright's availability.

I doubt the Yankees were one of them.

The Orioles viewed Jamie Walker, who officially joins them after he passes his physical, as perhaps the best left-handed reliever on the market.

"Now I'm curious how he's going to get David Ortiz out," Duquette said.

Jason Giambi, too.

The Orioles are making multiple offers so they're not caught putting all of their eggs in one basket, which Duquette believes happened with Paul Konerko last winter. He turned the Orioles down and they were left scrambling - which is my second-favorite way to order eggs after over-easy.

Duquette flashed his sense of humor. Asked if the Orioles were anywhere near matching the Boston Red Sox's $51.1 million bid for Daisuke Matsuzaka, he replied: "Paying $51 million to have negotiations with Scott Boras is not my idea of fun. That is not my idea of a great day at the beach."

ESPN Classic's "Who's Number 1?" listed the 20 best owners in sports. Strangely, Bob Irsay didn't make the cut.

roch.kubatko@baltsun.com

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