Gomez, Parrish move from O's to contenders


Indians claim utility player

left-hander traded to Mariners

August 10, 2007|By Roch Kubatko and Jeff Zrebiec | Roch Kubatko and Jeff Zrebiec,SUN REPORTERS

Andy MacPhail, the Orioles' new president of baseball operations, applied his first imprints to the organization yesterday. Though not particularly deep when viewed on the surface, they provided a significant clue about how he envisions the final two months of the season.

With MacPhail at the controls, the Orioles surrendered infielder Chris Gomez to the Cleveland Indians on a waiver claim and traded reliever John Parrish to the Mariners, after Seattle claimed the left-hander, for Triple-A outfielder Sebastien Boucher and another player or cash.

The moves allowed the Orioles to recall reliever James Hoey and purchase the contract of outfielder Tike Redman from Triple-A Norfolk, bringing changes to a team that is nine games below .500. They also seemed to indicate that MacPhail has adjusted his focus toward next season.

"It gives us the opportunity to get younger and puts us in a position to make as many good decisions as we possibly can related to 2008," MacPhail said.

Gomez, who re-signed as a free agent Dec. 18, was batting .302 in 73 games. He played all four infield positions and made 40 starts.

"Obviously, it's a shock," he said. "You're with the guys every day for a year and some guys the last two years. There's always mixed emotions. You create close bonds with these guys and you're all in it for one reason - that's to win. You have that bond and all of a sudden, you're with another team. I've heard lots of good things about the Cleveland organization, so it's something to look forward to. But I'm going to miss the guys here."

The returns of shortstop Miguel Tejada and third baseman Melvin Mora from the disabled list, and the need for another outfielder to compensate for an injury to Jay Gibbons influenced the Orioles' decision to relinquish Gomez.

Gibbons can't play the outfield, unless in an emergency, because inflammation around his left rotator cuff is prohibiting him from throwing. He suffered the injury while diving for a ball earlier this year and underwent a magnetic resonance imaging and an arthrogram Monday in Cincinnati.

Parrish had the longest tenure of any Oriole, joining the team for the first time on July 19, 2000, and beating Mora by nine days. The club selected him in the 25th round of the 1996 draft.

"It's kind of weird," said Parrish, who was 2-2 with a 5.40 ERA in 45 appearances this season, and 12-12 with a 4.52 ERA in 153 career games. "It caught me by surprise a little bit, but I think in the end it's going to be a good move for the Orioles and what they're trying to do with this ballclub."

Hoey was 2-0 with a 1.33 ERA and two saves in 20 games with Norfolk after going 1-0 with 14 saves and no runs allowed in 20 appearances with Double-A Bowie. He surrendered three runs in two-thirds of an inning in his only appearance with the Orioles in June, and got into 12 games with them last season.

Redman was batting .300 with 26 RBIs at Norfolk after beginning the year in the independent Atlantic League. He spent parts of five seasons in the Pittsburgh Pirates' organization, batting .277 with 15 homers.

Boucher, the Mariners' seventh-round pick in the 2004 draft, was hitting .298 in 28 games at Triple-A Tacoma. The Orioles assigned him to Norfolk.

Note -- MacPhail confirmed that the Orioles are having conversations with agent Scott Boras, the adviser for first-round draft pick Matt Wieters, but he wouldn't comment on any specifics. They have until Wednesday to sign the Georgia Tech catcher, who was the No. 5 pick, or he'll be eligible to re-enter next year's draft and the club will get a compensatory pick.

roch.kubatko@baltsun.com jeff.zrebiec@baltsun.com

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