It’s not a regular occurrence to see a team that is competing for a divisional title and/or wild card spot in the playoffs to trade away a two-time 50-save closer and not have someone ready to step in immediately. But that’s exactly what the Orioles did during the offseason when they traded Jim Johnson to Oakland for underutilized and underperforming second baseman, Jemile Weeks. They made a run at free agent closer Grant Balfour but an apparent concern over the health of his shoulder caused them to back off and opt to fill the ninth-inning vacancy with one of their in-house options. A few names were bandied about and finally, reports had them settling on starter-turned-reliever Tommy Hunter. However, with the recent signing of Ubaldo Jimenez, the Orioles seem to have an abundance of arms available and there are now rumblings that the ninth inning may not belong to Hunter as many of us thought.

After Hunter’s 2013 season, his first in the bullpen, saw him post a 2.81 ERA with a...

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