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News » Baltimore Orioles Inside Pitch 2009-01-21


Baltimore Orioles Inside Pitch 2009-01-21


Baltimore Orioles Inside Pitch 2009-01-21
The Orioles are comfortable entering spring training with Aubrey Huff as their first baseman.

"He has some interest in doing it," Orioles president Andy MacPhail said. "He had an outstanding season last year, and we're fortunate to have that internal option.

"But it even goes beyond Aubrey being able to play first. He can play third and he can DH. We're not, in no way, shape or form, relegated like we were in finding a catcher. We did have to find a catcher, but we don't necessarily have to find a first baseman because we have a perfectly attractive alternative."

Huff, 32, batted .304 with 32 home runs and 108 runs batted in en route to winning the Silver Slugger and Most Valuable Oriole awards in 2008.

Huff's bat isn't the concern. It's his glove.

The Orioles used Huff in 24 games at first base in 2008 and 51 times there in 2007. He's a career .992 fielder there, with 14 errors in 227 games played.

The Orioles used Kevin Millar at first base for much of the last two seasons, but the free agent has not been connected to the Orioles recently. The club seems more likely to carry an extra utility infielder than chase down a slugging first baseman.

It's likely Huff will play most of the time at first base, with Luke Scott and Ryan Freel platooning in left field and Scott serving as an occasional designated hitter -- unless the club finds a financially attractive alternative.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: January 21, 2009

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