Club Withdraws Offer To Draft Choice Givens



Jordan Says O's, 2nd-round Pick Won't Make Concessions

August 13, 2009|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,

Saying it's time to move on, Orioles amateur scouting director Joe Jordan withdrew his offer for second-round draft pick Mychal Givens and turned his attention to signing several of the team's other draft picks.

Givens, a shortstop out of H.B. Plant High in Tampa, Fla., was the 54th overall pick. Barring a sudden change before Monday's deadline to sign draft picks, Givens will accept a full scholarship to Oklahoma State and the Orioles will receive the sixth pick in 2010's second round as compensation for not signing him.

"We just have too much ground to cover," Jordan said. "We're doing other things, and I don't see us coming back around. These guys have been pretty much nonresponsive. ... The bottom line is we don't have an offer on the table."

The news of the withdrawn offer was first reported by Givens called the development a "big disappointment" and maintained that the Orioles knew exactly what he was asking for at the time they drafted him, a fact that Jordan did not dispute.

"They haven't really given me an offer to negotiate," Givens said. "There's no excitement for me. The only thing I was excited about was to play for the Orioles and play the position of Cal Ripken, who was the greatest shortstop I looked up to, and to play for the great fans there and to and play against the Yankees and Red Sox and hopefully beat them and win a World Series in a few years."

Jordan said he ultimately decided that it would be more beneficial to spend the time before Monday's deadline trying to sign some of his other picks.

"I just didn't feel like there was going to be enough concession on their side or mine," he said. "I have other things I can do to add talent to this system. I couldn't do that with this as my focus."

A couple of days after signing fourth-round pick Randy Henry, a right-handed pitcher, the Orioles agreed to terms with 22nd-round pick Cameron Coffey, a left-handed pitcher out of Houston Christian High in Texas. He'll take a physical today.

Ashur Tolliver, a left-handed pitcher out of Oklahoma City University and the club's fifth-round pick, took his physical Wednesday and his deal could be finalized today. The Orioles had agreed to terms with 25th-round pick Jay Johnson, a left-handed pitcher from California, but he failed his physical and will attend Texas Tech.

When Coffey and Johnson are official, the Orioles will have signed 19 of their top 25 picks and 26 of 50 overall.

Bergesen's return delayed

With his left shin still causing him significant pain, Brad Bergesen has stopped his throwing program, a development that will push his return back to late this month at the earliest.

Bergesen, who suffered a shin bruise when he was hit by Billy Butler's comebacker July 30, is eligible to come off the disabled list Saturday, but Orioles manager Dave Trembley said the rookie will need at least a week more than that.

"It just wasn't progressing like what I would have liked it to been," Bergesen said. "When it first happened, I thought 15 days and it would be good. It was still going to hurt, but I'd be able to pitch. But I tried to throw on Monday and it just didn't go well. It was not the same motion at all. I was really babying it. I was feeling kind of weak, so they just decided that I needed to take a few days and just not do anything with it."

Bergesen said that it remains possible that he might have suffered a tiny fracture that did not show up in the X-ray and CT scan.

Reimold also ailing

Left fielder Nolan Reimold was held out of the starting lineup Wednesday as Trembley continues to try to spell the rookie to rest his sore left leg. Reimold has been getting regular treatment on his Achilles tendon since last year, and also has had some pain behind his knee that he thinks is a result of overcompensating for the injury.

"It's nothing that is going to keep me off the field," Reimold said.

Roberts apologizes for gaffe

After his embarrassing base-running blunder Tuesday - when he forgot how many outs there were - Brian Roberts entered Trembley's office after the game with an apology and a gift.

"I said, 'I'm sorry, Skip,' and gave him a bottle of wine," Roberts said. "I've never done that in my life. I think everybody is going to do something embarrassing at a certain time."

"I knew that I hit third in that inning, but for some reason I just completely blanked that Chad [Moeller] had gotten on base and scored. [Third base coach Juan Samuel] yelled, but I ran by and it was too late anyway. I thought he was telling me to keep running. It's one of those things that happens."

Around the horn

With his first-inning single, Nick Markakis reached base for the 33rd consecutive game. ... Rich Hill (shoulder surgery) and Koji Uehara (partially torn flexor tendon in his right elbow) left the team and headed to the club's minor league complex in Sarasota, Fla. ... Roberts' third-inning double was his major league-leading 40th of the season, the fifth time in his career that he has reached the 40-double plateau. ... Roberts said tickets for the fourth-annual "Brian's Baseball Bash," the charitable event he'll host Sunday at the Inner Harbor ESPN Zone, are sold out.

Baltimore Sun reporter Dan Connolly contributed to this article.

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