Blog Entry

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

Posted on: December 9, 2009 4:23 pm
Edited on: December 9, 2009 7:14 pm

INDIANAPOLIS -- In a deal that allows Texas to clear salary off its books and Baltimore the chance to add the veteran starting pitcher it wants, the Rangers have agreed to send right-hander Kevin Millwood to the Orioles in exchange for pitcher Chris Ray, has learned.

The key to the deal is the Orioles agreeing to pick up "a significant portion" of Millwood's $12 million 2010 salary. The deal, in the final stages of being formalized, will be announced early Wednesday evening.

Millwood, 35, was 13-10 with a 3.67 ERA over 31 starts for the Rangers in 2009. He worked 198 2/3 innings and, in to the Rangers' credit, once they were eliminated in September, they did not pull the plug trying to limit his innings pitched. At 180, his 2010 option for $12 million automatically vested.

While the players' union certainly would have barked, the Rangers, who have been hovering on the brink of financial crisis since early last season, could have worked toward preventing that.

The Orioles were looking for a veteran starter to anchor a 2010 rotation that is expected to include youngsters Brian Matusz, Chris Tillman and likely Brad Bergesen or David Hernandez.

And with the market setting up for pitchers after Brad Penny ($7.5 million base salary with incentives that could bump that up to $9 million with St. Louis), Randy Wolf ($29.75 million over three years with Milwaukee) and Andy Pettitte ($12 million over one year) all signed this week, Millwood looks like a bargain for the Orioles.

Ray was 0-4 with a 7.27 ERA in 46 relief appearances for the Orioles in 2009. A 27-year-old right-hander, Ray missed the 2008 season following Tommy John ligament transfer surgery.


Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: December 10, 2009 7:27 am

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

You don't follow baseball that closely if you don't recognize Chris Ray.  He was the closer in Baltimore before George Sherrill arrived from Seattle.  He saved 33 games in 2006 and had an ERA around 2.70 before getting hurt late in 2007.  Pre-injury he was a legit all-star.

By the way, Barak-- nobody said Ray would be starting in Texas.  He's been a reliever his entire major league career.  With 191 appearances and no starts, it's a little foolish to start ranting that he'll give up 40 HRs as a starter when he'll never be one.

Since: Oct 9, 2006
Posted on: December 10, 2009 12:47 am

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

Good move on parts, and here's why. Texas Rangers free's up $9 mil this year. Goes after Rich Harden and Ben Sheets, and have a good 1/2 punch if they are both healthy. They are on the verge of getting Mike Lowell from Boston, and have as strong a group of young pitchers as there are next to the giants. I really like this deal for Texas, I don't however understand why the Orioles did it, They will not compete this year against the Red sox and Yankee's and Millwood will not mentor as much aas you may think. The job for players to get better falls to the pitching coach not the players, do you really believe the Young Rangers got more from Millwood then Mike Maddux? I see the Rangers have the chance to get good, and if the pitching of Harden and Sheets is good, then I see a playoff run this year.  

Since: Jan 6, 2008
Posted on: December 10, 2009 12:04 am

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

You O's fans obviously didn't see Millwood collapse the last few months of the season that partially made the Rangers miss the playoffs. He was benched for 2 1/2 because he was so terrible. He is a good person outside of baseball but has a terrible work ethic. Lazy, over-weight and out of shape. He is sweating like a pig by the second inning. Good luck with Millwood.

Since: May 22, 2009
Posted on: December 9, 2009 11:43 pm

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray


Chris Ray was a mess last season and was getting shelled.

Can't believe the Rangers can polish a turd.

Millwood will help the O's big time.

Koji Probably moves to the bullpen.

I Think GM Andy McPhail is working some magic to help the O's be competitive in the toughest division in Baseball.

Since: Jul 23, 2009
Posted on: December 9, 2009 10:32 pm

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

Of course the Orioles made a good move in getting Millwood. Having Millwood don't make them a contender just yet. Orioles still need more supporting cast along the way. Their offense is still good and still need a little fix there. AL East is always the best divison.

Since: Feb 23, 2008
Posted on: December 9, 2009 9:18 pm

Tom Tom Tom!

Sounds like a GPS least a Tom Tom can find a direction!  Were as Tom Hicks is adrift in debt and taking Dallas / Ft. Worth sports fan along for the ride. 

The sad thing to see here is that unless Tom is gone quickly and Nolan Ryan is part of the new ownership group, the Texas Rangers will lose all of this young talent that they current have in future years.  No one wants to stick around here when they know if they are the one star to get the money, then they will have no other support around them. 

As a life time Rangers fan (yes it's sad!) we are always full of hope and the promise of next year.  Please Nolan save us....


Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: December 9, 2009 8:40 pm

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

I never heard of Chris Ray....bad move on the Rangers. Add in the fact that he had a serious arm injury in 2008. The guy will never be as good as he was then. And he was very pathetic as a pitcher. He will fit in perfectly with the Rangers. I see him giving up over 40 homeruns as a starter. Once again great move on the Rangers part...getting rid of dependable Millwood for an injured unproven pitcher.

Since: Nov 29, 2007
Posted on: December 9, 2009 8:04 pm

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

Funny Rob, but that's more a wish that training camp started the day after the season ended since there is nothing to get me through unless I get to watch the line of people kicking Tom Hicks in the nuts...that would be worth my time.

Since: Feb 3, 2007
Posted on: December 9, 2009 8:00 pm

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

Very excited about this deal.  I don't like the huge part of the contract but Millwood will be a top of the rotation guy, move Guthrie to 2 or 3 and we have Bergeson, Tillman, and Matusz.  If the youngsters pitch well next season like we saw a few times last season, then the pitching might keep the O's in games.  Ray wasn't going to be the closer next year anyway and they need better bullpen arms so this is a great short-term move for the O's.  Millwood might be good for a year or so but they weren't getting a starter for the next 6-8 years anyway and weren't looking for one.  When I saw this headline I got excited.  I liked Ray pre-TJ surgery but he gave up some big hits/HR in his time and Millwood pitched well the last few years.  Now if the O's can get another bat or two, this could be a, dare I say, 500 team.  Baby steps here.

Since: Nov 6, 2006
Posted on: December 9, 2009 7:51 pm

Texas sends Millwood to Orioles for Ray

Sure it wasn't the best deal that Texas could've gotten, but it definitely was a good deal for them (as well as the orioles). The trading of Millwood was nothing more then a trade to free up some money. In 2006, Starting pitching seemed to be a necessity for the Rangers, and he pitched okay for them (starters faired poorly). 2007, Millwood little less of a necessity, starters fair horribly, he fairs poorly. In 2008, Starting pitching was crap, and Millwood wasn't that good either. Then, in 2009, starting pitching looked to be a little better, and the starters faired far above then were expected. In addition, Millwood had a relatively good year.

Considering how his contract has grown relatively expensive over the years due to the way the Rangers structured his initial contract, banking on how they thought he'd be their Ace (2006 = 7.9 Mil, 07 - 9.8 mil, 08= 10.4 mil, 09 = 12.9 Mil). In short, if you consider how the Rangers already have an abundance of talent at starting pitching in Nippert, Feldman, Hunter and McCartney (who are of ages from between 22 and 26) I'd say he is expendible. And when you consider how: they are getting Ray (a guy who pre Tommy John Surgery was a great closer for the Orioles (see his stats)), a class C/D prospect, and getting back $8 million to spend on other purposes, I think it looks like a decent deal.

Granted, they have chosen to chase Rich Harden, and that is a whole different story in its entirety.

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