Orioles' Duquette Suggests Club Now Faces Big Organizational Overhaul
Orioles Exec VP/Baseball Operations Dan Duquette plans to use the trade of SS Manny Machado to "herald in a sweeping set of practical and philosophical changes for the organization to follow on what will be a rebuild of not only the on-field, but also the off-field product," according to Jon Meoli of the BALTIMORE SUN. Duquette: "When you finally decide to go in another direction and set sail in another direction, it's difficult to get to that point where you say, 'OK, we're not going to be trying to win today.' ... That's a very tough decision to make. All professional organizations have to make it, but we've recognized it." Meoli notes the changes for the Orioles -- who have "one of the smallest scouting staffs in the game, have little presence in the Latin American markets ... and lag in several other areas -- will touch every facet of the organization." Duquette: "We had identified the areas that we needed to improve in -- technology, international scouting, facilities, the draft, strengthening our analytics, investing in international scouting, investing in more front office staff to be more in line with our competitors, expanding our nutrition and wellness resources at every level of the organization. Those are areas that we identified that we could improve in, and the ownership understands those are areas that we need to put more resources into." Duquette said that "part of the appeal" in trading for OF Yusniel Diaz, who defected from Cuba, was that the Orioles "don't typically have access" to Latin markets. Building up a Latin American operation will "not only take facilities upgrades," but a "commitment to building roots there." It is "incredibly ambitious for an organization that's been left behind by the rest of the league in many of these trends" (BALTIMORE SUN, 7/20).