The Baltimore Orioles are interested in signing Yoenis Cespedes to a contract and if the outfielder signs, it likely means that the O's will not sign back free agent slugger Chris Davis.
According to MLB.com, Brittany Ghiroli reports that the Orioles have made an offer to Cespedes and sources report the team is the "frontrunner" for the outfielder. The report says that the deal is in the "five-year, $90 million range" and also may have an option year attached to the deal. The Orioles have not confirmed that an offer has been made, but multiple sources report that an offer has been extended.
The Mets reportedly are still interested in signing Cespedes, but not to a long term deal. Jesse Sanchez at MLB.com reports that the Mets don't have an offer on the table for Cespedes, but would be willing to sign him to a deal at 1-3 years. Jerry Crasnick at ESPN reports that Cespedes is looking for a deal around $20 million per season over six years. Cespedes is one of the top free agents available, but the market has been slow to develop this offseason.
According to Sanchez, Cespedes is considering the Orioles offer along with the possibility of signing back with the Mets on a shorter deal, potentially a one year offer. Cespedes reportedly may consider signing a one year deal to allow himself to become a free agent again next offseason when the pool of outfielders is not deep. Sanchez reports that playing in Baltimore is appealing to Cespedes because of the hitter-friendly Camden Yards and that the outfielder is considering the offer.
The Orioles have reportedly extended an offer to free agent Chris Davis at around $150 million over seven years, but David is looking for a deal at around $200 million. The Orioles likely would move on from Davis if Cespedes is signed. The Orioles would not have to give up a draft pick for compensation if they signed Cespedes.