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03-08-2017 05:34:56

BALTIMORE -- Count Zach Britton among those who didn't Authentic Phil McConkey Youth Jersey foresee the Baltimore Orioles being buyers at this year's trade deadline. "I'm kind of surprised that no one got traded,” said Baltimore's closer on Tuesday afternoon, less than 24 hours after the non-wavier deadline expired. "I thought, just based on what I heard, there was a good chance I was going somewhere." Britton went nowhere. Not to the Astros. Not to the Dodgers. Not to the Indians or the Nationals or to any one of the dozen or so contending teams that were among this http://www.authenticnikegiantshop.com/P … ins-Jersey  year's purchasers. At this point, it's hard to know exactly what transpired in the final hours leading up to Monday's 4 p.m. ET cutoff. What we do know is that coming down to the wire, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that Britton would be shipped elsewhere. A brand-name closer with a sparkling resume and a contract that's set to expire following the 2018 season, he was this year's version of Andrew Miller: A game-changing back-end reliever who brings filth from the left side and had the potential to impact multiple postseasons for whichever club was willing to pony up for his services. What's more, his current club was floundering. Since opening the season 22-10, the Orioles have played .405 ball -- the second-worst clip in the American League. Their starting rotation has been abysmal, posting a 5.73 ERA that's the highest in the AL by more than half a run. Despite a slight Authentic Paul Dawson Youth Jersey uptick since the All-Star break -- they were 8-7 in the 15 games prior to the trade deadline -- there was no shortage of data suggesting that, for the first time since general manager Dan Duquette took over prior to the 2012 season, the O's would be in sell mode. On Monday morning, the O's had a 50-54 record and were 6.5 games out in the AL East. They were 5.5 games back of the second wild-card spot, trailing five teams and tied with two others. Perhaps most alarmingly, next-level math suggested they were actually worse than their record indicated: Based on their minus-72 run differential (only two AL teams were worse), the Orioles should have been more like 14 games under .500 instead of just four. No wonder FanGraphs gave them less than a 5 percent chance of making the playoffs (3.8, to be exact). All of which is to say, from the outside looking in, Baltimore -- a franchise whose farm system is http://www.bengalsshopfootball.com/beng … ims+jersey long overdue for a restocking -- seemed awfully seller-ish. Britton wasn't the Orioles' only marketable piece, of course. Third baseman Manny Machado, a transcendent talent whose contract also expires at the end of 2018 and whom the Orioles will likely be hard-pressed to re-sign, could've presumably fetched some serious prospect loot. Reliever Brad Brach, though not quite on the level of Britton, was an All-Star last year and has 16 saves this season. Young starters Dylan Bundy and Kevin Gausman, both of whom were high first-round picks, have been asked about. Even veteran center fielder Adam Jones, another free-agent-to-be after 2018, could have been a potential trade chip if Baltimore was willing to part with its longtime franchise face. Instead, Duquette and the Orioles held. They held everybody, including Britton. Not only did they not sell, they actually bought, acquiring hurler Jeremy Hellickson from Philly and infielder Tim Beckham from Tampa Bay. Just how unexpected was Baltimore's behavior at the deadline? Of the 17 MLB teams that were under .500 at the trade deadline, the O's Authentic Terrell Owens Youth Jersey were the only club that fell into the "buyer" category. The other 16 teams either sold or did nothing. "Nobody is running away with the American League East," Duquette told reporters Monday afternoon shortly after the trade deadline passed, trying to explain his club's actions. "The teams are so evenly matched.” While Duquette deserves credit for not throwing in the towel, in the process giving Orioles fans the potential (however small) for meaningful September baseball, his comments don't exactly ring true. Sure, technically no team is running away with the division because New York and Boston are only separated by half a game, but the Yankees have won 10 of their last 14 games. Over the past two weeks they've acquired a handful of key players, culminating with the buzzer-beating blockbuster that netted A-list hurler Sonny Gray. For the season, they've outscored their opponents by 118 runs. That's the fourth-best differential in baseball and nearly 200 runs better than Baltimore's margin. So mathematically speaking, contrary to Duquette's http://www.officialauthentics49ersshop. … ersey.html suggestion, it would seem that the Yanks and O's are not so evenly matched. Still, the Birds and owner Peter Angelos ended up buying, much to the confusion of those both inside and outside the Baltimore clubhouse. “Not necessarily,” said Britton when asked if he had a sense of his team’s direction. “I think a lot of guys would agree.” "It's a little crazy," said an executive from a contending team that was involved in discussions regarding Britton. "I'm surprised, but not really. With Angelos, they do things differently." How differently? In 2015, it took a five-game winning streak in late July to move the Birds over .500 and convince them that they were buyers. The result was an ill-advised deal that sent prospect Zach Davies to Milwaukee -- where his 26 wins since then are six more than any Baltimore starter -- in exchange for outfielder Gerardo Parra, who posted a .625 OPS for a Baltimore squad that finished with an 81-81 record.