Elias says he's not disappointed Orioles didn't make a deal - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Elias says he’s not disappointed Orioles didn’t make a deal

Photo Credit; Joy R. Absalon

BALTIMORE—Mike Elias was uncertain whether he’d be able to make a deal in the hours leading up to Wednesday’s trade deadline. In the end, he couldn’t. But he doesn’t sound disappointed.

“I think there were some moments where it looked like something might happen,” the Orioles’ general manager said Thursday night.

“We didn’t get close in the sense of exchanging medical files or anything like that. I’ve seen closer calls than what we had, but we were extremely active both in terms of our preparation but also the levels of communication, but just did not end up pulling the trigger on anything we felt was the right thing to do.

“Our goal is to raise the talent level up and down the organization and that includes players who are on the major league team, and the trades that were available to us, I didn’t feel like they were going to do that. I thought they might actually lower the talent level because these are guys we have under control.”

Elias pointed out that there aren’t any players on the 25- or 40-man rosters who are pending free agents. Mark Trumbo, who’s on the 60-day injured list, is the only player in the organization who fits into that category.

“It makes for a much different calculus when you’re talking about trading those guys than when you’re looking at a situation we had with Andrew Cashner, who was not going to be here next year. We didn’t have anything in front of us that we felt was right in terms of the right time to move players that we like or just not enough coming back for the guys we have.”

Two players mentioned in trade speculation were reliever Mychal Givens, who has two more years of club control after this one, and infielder Jonathan Villar, who can be a free agent after 2020. Elias could revisit the deals in the offseason.

“We weren’t feeling pressure to move anyone right now because, as I’ve said, these guys that we have on the team are under control,” Elias said. “In terms of, we are rebuilding and we’re kind of at the beginning stage of that process, so any time that we can take present value and convert it to future value, especially if it is more future value, yeah, it’s going be attractive to us. And we just never felt like we go to that point in the equation.”

“…We like these players. They’re here. They’re young, too. And having them around is great. I value these guys and we’re not going to just trade them just to trade them and say we traded guys and got a couple of names if we didn’t really believe in the names … if our scouting department didn’t believe in them.


“That can be kind of a quick high to get somebody who’s No 17 on the MLB.com list, but if you don’t really believe that it’s for real, it’s not the right move. So, we’re going to value these guys properly and do the right thing by the organization.”

After the Orioles signed their first two draft picks, catcher Adley Rutschman and shortstop Gunnar Henderson in late June, Elias said that he was disappointed in the team’s won-lost record. Since then, the team produced its first non-losing month since August 2017.

“I’m thrilled about the fact that we had a .500 July and how well the team played on the West Coast trip and the whole month,” Elias said. “That was great to see. Do I think that means, ‘Hey, this is at least a .500 team going forward? No, I don’t think that we’re there.

“But it’s nice to see those flashes. I like it better when we win than when we lose. And we want the record to be as good as possible. But I can’t stand here and announce that because of one good month we’ve turned the corner and we’re ready to be on the up and up.

“But the good thing is the talent is showing up, That’s the main goal right now and to see an Anthony Santander maybe start to establish himself as he has been. To see some of these guys really cement themselves in the major leagues, that’s the important thing and I think that the wins were flowing from that this month.”

One of the names who reportedly interested other teams was Trey Mancini. While he wasn’t traded, Elias didn’t sound eager to explore an extension for him.

“I don’t think anything has changed,” Elias said. “We kind of talked about this topic prior to the season, and spoken to it a little bit in the media. We like him. I hope he’s here for a long time. I’ve said that for a while, and he’s more than you can ask for in the clubhouse. He’s having a terrific season, and he’s our best player, so we like having him here.

“I still feel like this is my first year. As Brandon [Hyde] said, we’re in an inventory-taking stage. I think we’re at the beginning part of a new era of baseball here. Looking at contract extensions is just not at the forefront of my plate right now, but certainly he’s an attractive guy to have here for a while.”

A month from now, teams can expand their rosters to 40 players. Pitcher Keegan Akin, first baseman Ryan Mountcastle and outfielders Austin Hays and DJ Stewart are players who could be considered.

“We haven’t sat down and had those planning discussions, the front office, Brandon Hyde, the staff,” Elias said. “I do imagine on the pitching side, having some extra arms around will certainly be a positive as you get that late into the season. Then we’ll look for areas to bolster, but everything is going to be a development decision so if it’s the right thing to do for the kid, we’ll do it. If we feel like it’s not the right thing to do for him, we’ll wait.”

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB



  1. CalsPals

    August 2, 2019 at 8:11 am

    Unfortunately for Mancini, CD is keeping him off of 1st base & effecting his opportunity to sign a longer term contract, Elias can’t help but see the fiasco CD (& his contract) have turned into & he doesn’t have to take (rightly so) any responsibility for the nightmare, but won’t move forward w/anything to possibly make him (or the O’s) look bad, Boom Boom is kinda collateral damage, victim of the system, not his play…go O’s…

  2. Schwarzstop

    August 2, 2019 at 9:05 am

    It’s so nice to have a GM that talks to the media (and therefore the fans) and has something to say! I like the things he is saying and I like the things he is doing! The O’s are on a course to competitiveness for years to come (once we get there).


      August 2, 2019 at 9:10 am

      Another orange kool-aid drinker. Looks like the “Boy Wonder” was in over his head at his first trading deadline. Watch them non-tender Villar because they don’t want to pay his 2020 salary.
      So we will get ZERO for him.

      • Jbigle1

        August 2, 2019 at 12:05 pm

        Would a 27 year old reliever in AA have made you feel warm inside, Victor? Villar had no trade value. The only thing we would’ve ever gotten for him was salary relief.

  3. CalsPals

    August 2, 2019 at 9:10 am

    Rich, is Elias’ related to the stats company at all, just curious…thanks…go O’s…

  4. PC in OC

    August 2, 2019 at 10:05 am

    I like Elias train of thought. I like, who we have in the minors. I like, who we got in the draft. I would also like to get the First pick, in next years draft. That would really put the nails in the coffin. However, What I don’t like, is Elias, not giving Mancini an extension. We have made toooo many of those mistakes.

    • CalsPals

      August 2, 2019 at 10:33 am

      See above, Chris Davis extension, hows that working out now? Go O’s…

    • Bhoffman1

      August 2, 2019 at 10:37 am

      Comparing CD extension a guy who despite the homers was getting older and many saw on the way down to a relatively young Mancini who’s most probably on the way up is asinine.

    • CalsPals

      August 2, 2019 at 1:20 pm

      Not asinine, your opinion, not worth anything here…go O’s…

  5. Bman

    August 2, 2019 at 10:39 am

    2020: extend Mancini, release Davis, trade Cobb, Givens, Bleier, etc. call up Mountcastle, and a bunch of Bowie pitchers. Pick #1 or 2 in draft, stockpile some more talent, esp pitching.

  6. PA Bird Lover

    August 2, 2019 at 11:18 am

    I believe Mr. Elias knows his stuff & direction.

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