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Orioles set to talk extension with J.J. Hardy

Feb 1, 2014, 5:41 PM EDT

J.J. Hardy AP

When the Orioles signed shortstop J.J. Hardy to a three-year, $22.5 million extension in 2011, many figured he’d eventually become trade bait because of the need to make room for Manny Machado. However, with those two co-existing just fine in the Baltimore infield, Orioles GM Dan Duquette told MASN’s Roch Kubatko he will approach Hardy about a new deal prior to Opening Day.

The 31-year-old Hardy will likely want a bigger contract this time around. He won his first Gold Glove in 2012 and then repeated last season. He’s also combined for 77 homers in his three seasons in Baltimore, easily the most in the majors among shortstops during that time frame. Next on the list is Troy Tulowitzki at 64. Hardy isn’t truly that valuable offensively — those homers have come with a .298 OBP — but the pop, durability and steady glove will lead to plenty of demand if he hits free agency.

With that in mind, Hardy could ask for a deal similar to the four-year, $53 million pact that Jhonny Peralta got from the Cardinals this winter. The two are the same age, and while Peralta’s best offensive seasons have easily outstripped Hardy’s, the historical difference between the two isn’t so great (Peralta has a career 101 OPS+, while Hardy is at 96). Hardy is probably the better player of the two after factoring in defense.

  1. pipkin42 - Feb 1, 2014 at 6:19 PM

    NO DON’T DO IT!

    Stupid Oreos.

    • boogerhill - Feb 1, 2014 at 9:45 PM

      I don’t know what lil Matthew has been smoking, but Hardy has been a much better player than Peralta. Hardy is a Gold glover, Peralta stinks in the field. Hardy has way more power, drives in more runs, and is not a roider like fathead jhonny!

      • pipkin42 - Feb 2, 2014 at 2:27 AM

        The Orioles already have a great shortstop. His name is Manny Machado. Keep Hardy for the year to make sure Machado is back to full strength, sure, but what’s the upside of a .300 OBP shortstop in his 30s?

      • randomdigits - Feb 2, 2014 at 11:07 AM

        That long term extension for Roberts worked out so well…

        With the owner’s constraints on payroll the O’s can not afford to retain their “core” players and put the talent around them that is necessary to be a playoff team.

  2. larrymahnken - Feb 1, 2014 at 6:20 PM

    This is dumb on multiple levels.

  3. happytwinsfan - Feb 1, 2014 at 7:48 PM

    terry ryan, you need to atone for the original sin committed by your anointed by you temporary successor, bill smith, who was bamboozled by former twin gm any mcphail into trading hardy for next to nothing in order to embark on the nishioka boondagle, by siging drew. we peasants with pitch forks demand it !!

  4. mmeyer3387 - Feb 1, 2014 at 8:51 PM

    I’m sure that some will view Hardy as someone that can be easily replaced by Manny. However,Hardy is the type of guy that every team needs. He’s a great glove, power, value,talent, plus good durability. Additionally, he is a very good locker room guy. The only thing that he leaves wanting is a better on base percentage. Nonetheless, he will clearly have his share of buyers if he reaches the market. The Orioles should keep Hardy and Manny.Clearly there is nothing wrong with having more than one gold glove in your infield. The O’s should lock him up or they will regret the day that they let him walk.

    • pipkin42 - Feb 2, 2014 at 2:29 AM

      “The only thing that he leaves wanting is a better on base percentage.”

      Translation:

      “The only thing that he leaves wanting is that he makes tons of outs.”

  5. braven4evr - Feb 1, 2014 at 9:06 PM

    He will sign a new contract…a nice one at that and then he will fail the ORIOLES physical…. just sayn

  6. fomeols - Feb 1, 2014 at 9:13 PM

    So OPS+ ignores defense?
    If it’s purely an offensive star, surely defensive ability as to be figured into the “how good is he” equation, and Hardy is probably in MLB’s top 5.

  7. syphermce - Feb 1, 2014 at 9:22 PM

    If Hardy resigns, it would be good for the Orioles because you have Schoop that is coming up in the minors for second base but other than that, nothing that’s going to make in impact over the next couple years in the infield. If you don’t resign him, you’ll move Machado with shortstop and be left with a gaping hole at third base. Or if you leave Machado at third, you got the hole at shortstop.

    • mmeyer3387 - Feb 1, 2014 at 10:10 PM

      I agree the O’s should keep Hardy, if they do not, chances they will have a hole. It will not be easy to. replace a player like Hardy If you take into account the big picture, he worth more than most realize.

  8. sawxalicious - Feb 1, 2014 at 10:20 PM

    An extension won’t amount to a hill of beans if they don’t make some smart moves to improve the rest of the team.

  9. scoobies05 - Feb 2, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    because having too many all stars is a bad thing?

  10. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Feb 2, 2014 at 2:51 PM

    So much stupidity in these comments. Hardy is a top 5 shortstop. There is no possible scenario where getting rid of Hardy is a good idea. He hits for power, he’s the best or second best defensive short stop in the league, and keeping him means Manny can hold down thirdbase. After they resign Davis, and Schoop comes up, guess what? Your infield is set for the next 5 years.

  11. thebirdsareback - Feb 4, 2014 at 9:04 AM

    Thank god you trolls dont run MY BIRDS! You morons drink the haterade waaaaay too much. J.J. Hardy is the BEST Short Stop in the majors at this current moment and the orioles would be foolish to let him walk. He is a pivital part of our strong “CORE” players. Did we forget that the Baltimore Orioles of 2013 had one of the best statistical defenses of ALL TIME!.

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