“We have some things we can build on, because we had a good year last year, but this is 2013,” Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations Dan Duquette said. “This is a new group of players. This is a new season. We have new challenges. This is effectively a new team, but I can tell you this: The consistency of the leadership from the manager and the work ethic of the players instilled last year, that should carry over.”
The famous Abbott and Costello skit “Who’s on First” declares a guy named “Who” is on first and a guy named “What” is on second. But for the 2013 Baltimore Orioles, it’s not a question of what being on second but who? Are you following along?… Good!
Let’s begin then.
Four years ago in 2009 the answer to the question “who plays second for the Orioles?” was an easy one, Brian Roberts. Between 2003 and 2009 Roberts’ name might as well have been printed on Oriole lineup cards leading off and playing second base. However since the end of the 2009 season, Roberts has been plagued by injuries (perhaps the most absurd being his self-inflicted concussion) and has played in just 115 games for the O’s.
Roberts has hit at least 50 doubles in three seasons as an Oriole. (AP Photo)
Manager Buck Showalter will have a few options to fill the hole at second base. Roberts, now 35-years-old, is expected to be completely healthy for the start of spring training. However this past offseason the Orioles claimed Alexi Casilla off waivers from the Minnesota Twins and Ryan Flaherty, who started 20 games at second for the birds in 2012, is also on the roster.