Baltimore Orioles: The smoke in mirrors tactic

Contrary to what you might have heard of late and what resurfaced again over the weekend, the Baltimore Orioles aren’t walking away from the table regarding Mark Trumbo. That much I know. As is the case in all business deals, you have to let your counterparts know that you’re willing to walk away.

The Orioles did this with Davi last year, and it worked. Some will argue tht the Birds still overpaid for him, and maybe they did. But he’s still an Oriole, and I’d hardly call it a gross overpay. Nevertheless, I gaurantee you that they aren’t “done” per se with Mark Trumbo. The lines of communication are still open.

But one might also argue that this tactic of walking away being smoke in mirrors is very risky. It’s very much an old school business ploy, and one with which i personally agree if we’re being honest. And that’s really a key word – honesty. A lot of people would submit that it’s bordering on dishonest to pretend to walk away but to not really do so.

So the risk of course is that Trumbo’s agent and perhaps another team decide to take the Orioles simply at their word. Since the offer’s off the table, there’s no reason to keep the Orioles involved, right? Someone else could swoop in and make an offer only slightly better than that of the Orioles. Since at this point Trumbo has to wonder where and when he’s going to get a deal, he may well decide to take it. And again, since the Orioles claimed they were away from the table, would the agent still call them and ask them to match the offer?

It’s almost like a game of chicken in a way. Obviously the Birds are starting to grow tired of some of Trumbo’s agent’s ploys, however they certainly don’t want to lose a chance to get Trumbo back because of  what some might call shady tactics.

Mind you, I’m not saying the tactic is shady. However some naive folks who can’t see the difference between smart and shady would think differently. Again, trust me folks; at the end of the day, the Orioles very much want Trumbo back. They just don’t like his salary requirements, and they want Trumbo to think they’re done. Again, it’s like a game of chicken.


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