Hunter more valuable to Orioles in bullpen

Hunter more valuable to Orioles in bullpen
November 7, 2012, 1:45 pm
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As the general manager’s meetings begin in Indian Wells, Calif. today, there will be plenty of interest by the Orioles in talking with other teams.

Lots of the other teams will be checking with Orioles’ executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette about possible moves.

One player who may get a lot of attention is Tommy Hunter.

Hunter was the big prize in the July 2011 trade that sent Koji Uehara to Texas, Andy MacPhail thought.

In fact, it was Chris Davis, who was the big catch.

Hunter allowed 32 home runs last year, and that got him sent to both Norfolk and Bowie for remedial instruction.

After he returned in early September, Hunter was used exclusively in the bullpen, and he was much better. He allowed just one run in 12 2/3 innings.

He made the postseason roster and had two scoreless appearances against New York in the Division Series.

While Hunter might like to go back to starting, he’s of greater value in the bullpen. The Orioles seem to have lots of fine options there, but should listen to see if other teams have an interesting left fielder or second baseman.

Manager Buck Showalter is a Hunter fan. He enjoys his outgoing personality. He’ll enjoy it even  more if Hunter continues to shine in relief.