Orioles will consider Tejada as a Reynolds replacement at 3B
After an awful start, Mark Reynolds has hit better in the last five games. That's significant, because the Orioles signed Miguel Tejada to a minor-league contract with the idea that he could replace Reynolds at third base, if Reynolds continued to struggle. Tejada, 37, reported this week to the Orioles' extended spring training team.
In the first five days after the Orioles agreed to bring Miguel Tejada back to the organization, Mark Reynolds hit .412, with three doubles and his first two home runs of the season.
Related? Probably not.
Significant? Definitely, because the Orioles' plan in giving Tejada what amounts to a tryout at extended spring training was that he could potentially replace Reynolds as their regular third baseman.
Tejada, who played with the Giants last year and played winter ball in the Dominican Republic, only reported to Sarasota, Fla., this week. It will be a while before he's ready to contribute in the major leagues, if he even proves he can do so.
But the Tejada tryout is one more indication of how frustrated the Orioles have been with Reynolds, who was hitting .136 with just three RBI in 20 games before his recent hot streak. Since coming to the Orioles in a December 2010 trade with the Diamondbacks, Reynolds has hit .217, with 39 home runs and 95 RBI in 180 games.
He led the American League last year with 196 strikeouts, and has 34 in 83 official at-bats this season.
The Orioles explored trading Reynolds this spring, but with a $7.5 million contract and an $11 million 2013 option, his value on the trade market was limited.
The 37-year-old Tejada played for the Orioles from 2004-07, and again for the first half of 2010. He hit .239 with a .596 OPS last year with the Giants, where he split time between third base and shortstop.
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