Let the 2018 season play itself out
Consider this: would you rather hold on to a cluster of top prospects and wait for them to bloom, while utilizing high-upside guys like Brandon Drury — keeping payroll flexibility for any necessary free agents come next winter?
Or, do you want to throw caution to the wind and go all in on Manny being Manny, part two?
You know, there’s always another option not many people are currently talking about. The one that sees the Orioles intelligently trading Machado before July 31 to a club he enjoys playing for — and soon after signs an extension.
There are plenty of clubs in need of an All-Star third baseman that can trade a treasure trove of prospects — the Cardinals, Braves, Red Sox and Mariners come to mind.
That would definitely less complicate things, but Brian Cashman would undoubtedly be hung in effigy (though of no fault of his own). Cashman, forever the scapegoat. Well, now that Joe Girardi is gone.
It’s a long season, and a lot will happen between now and October. Maybe Manny gets hurt; perhaps he re-signs with the O’s (unlikely), or maybe Cashman trades for him at the deadline (even more unlikely).
Thankfully, the 2018 season should give the powers that be enough insight to make a calculated decision that is certain to enrage a portion of the fanbase this time next season. So many possibilities!