Looking for a boost as they prepare for the stretch run in the AL East division race, the Baltimore Orioles have claimed two big right-handed bats off the waiver wire. And for Nationals fans, the names are quite familiar.
Michael Morse and Josh Willingham could both be Orioles within the next 48 hours if Baltimore can make a trade with their respective teams. For Morse, the O's are talking to the Mariners about acquiring him and the rest of his $6.75M deal for this season. For Willingham, it's the Twins and his contract which pays $7M this season and the next.
The Mariners and Twins could always keep their power-hitting outfielders, if a deal can't be reached. But with the Orioles 4.5 games out of the AL Wild Card after two consecutive losses, it would seem they are intent on acquiring at least one of the former Nats.
Morse's contract probably makes him the most likely of the two to be shipped east. Both have had similar seasons, each playing less than 80 games and hitting less than .230. And both could play some outfield and be capable in the designated hitter spot.
The Orioles have until Friday afternoon to make a deal for Willingham and Saturday afternoon for Morse.