The Birds' biggest bat is back.
Orioles slugger Mark Trumbo was at Oriole Park at Camden Yards Friday fresh off signing a three-year contract with the O's worth $37.5 million. That's considerably less than what many thought the 31-year-old would fetch on the free agent market after smacking a Major League-high 47 home runs last year. Trumbo admitted the free agent process wasn't exactly what he expected.
“I'm thrilled to be back with a ballclub that was my first choice by far,” said Trumbo. “You kind of go into it thinking that you might have a ton of suitors. You lead the league in home runs. Who's not interested in that? Then you realize that there aren't that many vacancies at times for what you do, especially this year.”
As for whether there were other deals that might have lured him away from Baltimore:
“I guess there were a few offers that might have made some sense,” said Trumbo. “That was very early on. If there were competitive offers on the table, even if this one had been a little bit lower, I mean this was my first choice.”
“Mark is an elite player. He has elite power and elite skills,” said Orioles Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations Dan Duquette. “He's a gritty player. He fits in with the team. He's a good teammate.”
And after tasting a wild card playoff game, the outfielder/designated hitter wants to finish what he started with the O's.
“I think any time you get close to something, with a good group, you want to see it through at least. I think the team and the season we put together was really incredible. We ultimately didn't get as far as we wanted. But when you look at the bulk of what we did it was quite impressive.”
Trumbo says the goal in 2017 is for a repeat of last year’s numbers or even better. That should be tough but it's doable, he says in part because he has a better understanding of the pitching he'll be facing in the American League East.
Below is the Orioles Press Release from when Trumbo re-signed on January 20:
The Orioles today announced that they have signed OF MARK TRUMBO to a three-year contract. To make room on the 40-man roster, OF ADAM WALKER has been designated for assignment.
Trumbo, 31, led Major League Baseball with 47 home runs last season and tied for the fourth-highest single season home run total in Orioles history. He extended Baltimore’s streak to four consecutive seasons (2013-16) of having an Orioles hitter lead Major League Baseball in home runs. The two-time All-Star set career highs in hits (157), extra-base hits (75), home runs, RBI (108), runs scored (94), slugging percentage (.533), OPS (.850), and outfield assists (10). The 2016 Silver Slugger has hit 149 home runs since 2012 to rank 10th in the majors in that span. Trumbo also homered in his first career postseason game after starting as the designated hitter in the AL Wild Card Game at Toronto.
Over a seven-year Major League career, Trumbo has batted .251/.303/.473 with 178 home runs and 517 RBI over 849 games. He was acquired by the Orioles in a trade from the Seattle Mariners on December 2, 2015. Originally drafted by the Anaheim Angels in the 18th round of the 2004 First-Year Player Draft, Trumbo played four seasons with the Angels (2010-13) and also has spent time with the Arizona Diamondbacks (2014-15) and Seattle Mariners (2015).
Walker, 25, was claimed off waivers from the Milwaukee Brewers in December after spending five minor league seasons in the Minnesota Twins organization. He has hit .251/.310/.486 (559-for-2225) with 110 doubles, 124 home runs, 429 RBI, and 43 stolen bases over 584 career minor league games.
“We are happy that we were able to bring Mark Trumbo back to the Orioles,” Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations DAN DUQUETTE said. “We like his presence in our lineup and professional work ethic along with the elite power he brings to our ballpark.”