As much as the Red Sox would love to include Manny Ramirez in a trade for Miguel Tejada, the Orioles are unlikely to be interested in moving their marquee player for a player Boston is trying to unload.
Tejada (above) is owed $48 million and Ramirez has $57 million left on his contract, but the large salaries do not translate into a possible exchange that would be equally appealing to Baltimore.
Duquette was working with the Mets last summer when they nearly acquired Ramirez for Mike Cameron, Lastings Milledge – their prized prospect – and another prospect, with the Red Sox picking up about a fourth of Ramirez’s salary.
That package is not nearly as impressive as Tejada, who batted .304 with 26 homers and 98 runs batted in last season. In addition, Ramirez must approve any deal.
While Boston could offer the minor league infielder Andy Marte or pitching prospects like Craig Hansen and Jonathan Papelbon, Duquette said the Orioles were committed to trying to win the American League East in 2006.
Duquette said the Orioles, who signed the free-agent catcher Ramon Hernandez this week, believe they can be competitive in the strong division if they make a few more moves. Trading Tejada to a division rival would damage Baltimore’s hopes.
(postscript : according to the Washington Post’s Jorge Arangue Jr., there is actual discussion of such a deal within the Orioles offices. Peter Angelos, obviously hoping that Boston will eat some of Manny’s salary is quoted as saying “”I’d find it difficult to justify a $20 million salary per year for anybody. The economics of the game don’t support that type of salary for any player.” Considering that Tejada is making $15 million per year, this is an interesting comment. Is Manny worth $5 million more a year than Miggy? Or is Miggy a relative bargain at $15 million compared to Manny?)