Orioles acquire infielder Engelb Vielma from Giants for cash, future considerations - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Dan Connolly

Orioles acquire infielder Engelb Vielma from Giants for cash, future considerations

Photo credit: Kim Klement/USA Today Sports

It’s not exactly a move that is going to get Saturday’s Fanfest rocking, but the Orioles added a player to their 40-man roster Friday, acquiring infielder Engelb Vielma from the San Francisco Giants for cash or future considerations.

Vielma, 23, has never played in the majors, but he is considered an above-average defender and could be in the mix for the Orioles’ open utility infield job.

“Our scouts like Vielma’s tools and ability to play shortstop,” said Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette. “He is young and talented.”

He’s also been well traveled in the past few months.

Originally signed by the Minnesota Twins out of Venezuela, Vielma spent six seasons in that organization, hitting a combined .253 with a .316 on-base percentage. Last year, the switch-hitter batted .229 in 121 games at Triple-A Rochester and Double-A Chattanooga, and was waived by the Twins in September.

He was claimed off waivers by the Giants, who then lost him via waivers to the Philadelphia Phillies, who lost him to the Pittsburgh Pirates. After the Pirates put him on waivers earlier this month, the Giants reclaimed him. And now they’ve dealt him to the Orioles, who don’t have a set utility player behind infielders Manny Machado, Tim Beckham, Jonathan Schoop and Chris Davis.

Vielma, who has multiple minor league options remaining, has primarily played shortstop in his career, but also has logged time at second base and third.

The Orioles didn’t have a utility player on the roster – assuming they won’t use Beckham in that role – but several in the organization, including Luis Sardinas and Ruben Tejada, are expected to vie with Vielma for the spot in spring training.

The club’s 40-man roster, now at 39, includes 24 pitchers.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Ben1

    January 26, 2018 at 7:16 pm

    But can he pitch? I dont want to ask why
    … but WHY????

    • Mau

      January 26, 2018 at 9:04 pm

      Dan is doing what Dan does, Duquette I mean. Well, Connelly too. Typical O’s winter. Glad I was able to watch the O’s organization in the 70’s and 80’s. Will probably never see anything like that in Baltimore again in my lifetime.

      • thebookdoc

        January 27, 2018 at 12:27 am

        Why are so many Orioles fans negative and defeatist?

        • Boog Robinson Robinson

          January 27, 2018 at 8:43 am

          THANK YOU DOC!!! I’ve been wondering the same thing around here for 2 years now. These are the same fans that will whine to high heaven if Duquette re-ups Slash Flaherty!

          • Mau

            January 27, 2018 at 3:29 pm

            I’m not the same as anything you know, bro. O’s fans are becoming negative because for several years in a row they failed to upgrade their pitching staff while offering crushing contracts to Mendoza line hitters. Now they appear to have a front row seat in the cellar for the foreseeable future.

          • thebookdoc

            January 28, 2018 at 12:07 pm

            Mau, I think you are stumblingly wrong. I’m sorta excited to see one or two of those rule 5s in the rotation. I’m nuts as heck, I know. But I also know a few other things: the free agent market is lulling into the season…where are all the signed arms for mega contracts? Nowhere. There is plenty of time for something to happen.Regardless I’m a fan, i will enjoy the team if they go out there staffed just as they are today and hope to see some amazing performances to followup Mancini’s introduction, and maybe a bit of a rebound from the 2017 disappointments.

            The Os were not a tragedy last year until September when they washed out and played .250 ball (7-21). before that they were still 3 games above 500. No one liked that slide.

            That’s my team, and I listen to them at 2am at night here in Spain. That’s because I’m a fan.

    • Dan Connolly

      January 29, 2018 at 12:51 pm

      Just your occasional reminder to be nice all. Differing opinions are awesome. What’s more awesome is how great everyone is to each other in here.

  2. bigdaddydk

    January 27, 2018 at 8:25 am

    Was this one of the guys that the front office was in “deep discussions” with, as we were told recently? It’s a real confidence booster, that’s for sure. /sarc.

    That aside, I’m trying to see what Vielma brings to the team that Salcedo, Sardiñas, et al, don’t already offer. He appears to be someone who serves only as a late inning substitution for defense and someone whose bat you hope doesn’t come to the plate. While his BA is Crush-ian in nature, at least Davis has some pop. I thought the days of the Mark Belanger, all-glove, no-bat, middle infielder were over. Then again, we had Flaredog for how long?

    • Dan Connolly

      January 29, 2018 at 12:50 pm

      I can’t tell ya specifics but I know he is supposed to be great defensively. And that’s huge at Triple-A too for the confidence of those young pitchers. Because if he doesn’t win the utility job, Sardinias or Tejada likely will, weakening the AAA defense.

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