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Seattle trades Robinson to Baltimore for Andino

Seattle trades Robinson to Baltimore for Andino

SEATTLE (AP) Looking to add depth to the infield, the Seattle Mariners acquired versatile Robert Andino from the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday in exchange for reserve outfielder Trayvon Robinson.

The trade instantly gives the Mariners an experienced infielder who can play second base, third base and shortstop. Andino is likely to fill the role held this past season by Japanese infielder Munenori Kawasaki.

``With Robert having major league and playoff experience and still relatively young, we thought that it made sense to make this trade and let him come in and compete,'' Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik said in a statement.

Despite struggling at the plate, Andino has played in 266 games the last two seasons for the Orioles. Andino started 106 games last season for the Orioles, including 96 at second base, but also spent time at shortstop and third base.

Andino is out of options and is arbitration eligible. The trade left Seattle's 40-man roster at 37.

Robinson played in 90 games over the past two seasons for the Mariners. He hit .215 in his limited major league time, but was caught in a log-jam of outfielders, along with Mike Carp, Casper Wells, Carlos Peguero and Eric Thames, seeking playing time with the Mariners.

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Orioles plan on taking another power trip to AL playoffs

Orioles plan on taking another power trip to AL playoffs

BALTIMORE -- The Baltimore Orioles have found a formula for success, and they're sticking with it.

Hit the long ball, play solid defense, close out the game with your outstanding bullpen. For three of the past five years -- including last season -- that's gotten the Orioles into the playoffs.

That's the plan for 2017, too.

With defending major league home run champ Mark Trumbo, slugger Chris Davis and hard-hitting Manny Machado leading the way, Baltimore hopes to have enough power to compensate for a starting rotation that lacks depth and experience.

Former first-round picks Kevin Gausman and Dylan Bundy stand atop a rotation that will start the season without ace Chris Tillman, who's nursing a shoulder injury that will keep him on the disabled list through opening day. Right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez (8-12, 5.44 ERA) and lefty Wade Miley (9-13, 5.37) are coming off lackluster seasons, and if they don't rebound the Orioles might find themselves in a whole lot of high-scoring games.

If that's the case, then Baltimore will need another prolific season from a lineup that led the majors in long balls and had five starters hit at least 25 home runs.

Executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette brought back Trumbo as a free agent during the offseason after doing the same with Davis one year earlier. Why bother with bunts and stolen bases when you can get three runs with one swing of a bat?

"That's the way we like it," manager Buck Showalter said. "It fits us perfect."

If Baltimore's starters can keep the game close for six or seven innings, the bullpen can win it. All-Star closer Zach Britton was brilliant last season, compiling a 0.54 ERA and converting every one of his 47 save opportunities while operating behind standout setup men Brad Brach and Darren O'Day.

Quite by design, this team looks very much like the one that went 89-73 last year.

"That's really nice when you walk in for a new season to have a lot of the same group," Davis said. "And not only the same group, but a lot of guys have been together for five and six years."

MORE ORIOLES: Zach Britton hopes to duplicate great 2016 season

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Adam Jones is making Orioles fans proud with play after amazing play at World Baseball Classic

Adam Jones is making Orioles fans proud with play after amazing play at World Baseball Classic

By Lisa Redmond (@LisaARedmond

Team USA is headed to the World Baseball Classic for the first time ever (!).

After a 2-1 victory over two-time WBC winner Japan, Team USA will play Puerto Rico Wednesday night for the title. Marcus Stroman is set to start for Team USA and Seth Lugo will do the same for Puerto Rico.

The standout playmaker for the Americans has been Orioles pie-thrower Adam Jones. Jones, a five-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glove award winner, has dropped some jaws with huge plays that helped push Team USA to the finals.

Against Colombia in the first round, Jones hit a walk-off single that allowed Christian Yelich to score from third and lifted Team USA to a 3-2 victory in the tenth inning. His walk-off during Friday night's game in Miami is only the third in WBC history for Team USA. The other two came from David Wright and Alex Rodriguez.

Moving onto Saturday night's contest against the Dominican Republic, Jones made the highlight play of the 2017 WBC. In his hometown of San Diego, Jones robbed fellow Oriole Manny Machado of a monstrous home run. Nearly leaping into the stands, Jones somehow snagged the should-have-been-gone ball.

After the catch, Team USA pitcher Tyler Clippard could be seen on video mouthing “Oh my God,” while Machado couldn’t help but tip his hat to Jones as he ran back to the dugout. Team USA would go on to beat the Dominican Republic 6-3 and advance to the semi-finals.

The Orioles star told MLB.com that even he was stunned when he caught the ball.

I'm still in kind of shock that I even got to that ball ... I mean, off the bat I'm just like this ball's hit really far, so just keep going, keep going. You know this California air's going to slow it down, and just never quit. That's just the style I play with. I don't mind running into a wall or two.

The stats on that catch are pretty shocking, too. According to Statcast, Jones plays as shallow as any outfielder does, usually at 307 feet from the plate. However, on this play he was 321 feet out, helping him run down the ball with a leaping grab.

Statcast calculates that the ball left Machado's bat at a velocity of 106.2 mph and a launch angle of 26 degrees. Those numbers combined gives a batter a 95% chance of a hit and a 90% chance of a home run. But Machado's odds didn't mean much with Jones roaming center field. 

After beating the Dominican Republic, Team USA moved on to play Japan Tuesday night and, for the third time, Jones made the difference. At the top of the eighth with the score tied at 1 apiece, he hit a go-ahead RBI which bounced off the glove of Japan’s third baseman Nobuhiro Matsuda, giving Brandon Crawford extra time to score before throwing Jones out at first. Team USA went on to beat WBC heavyweight Japan, 2-1. 

If you have watched any of the WBC games, you can see just how much fun Jones is having throughout the series. Hopefully, the good times will keep rolling for Team USA as they play for the title tonight at 9 p.m. at Dodger Stadium.

RELATED: ORIOLES' ZACH BRITTON HOPES TO DUPLICATED GREAT 2016 SEASON