Orioles add Franchy Cordero in a savvy move with practically no risk

The Baltimore Orioles picked up former Red Sox left fielder and first baseman Franchy Cordero on a low-risk, one-year deal.

Free-agent first baseman/outfielder Franchy Cordero and the Baltimore Orioles are in agreement on a split one-year, major-league contract, according to a source familiar with the situation. The deal will pay Cordero $1.35 million if he’s in the majors and $450,000 if he’s in the minors.

Cordero, 28, is an intriguing upside pickup for the Orioles. Cordero has struggled with injuries throughout his career and was outrighted during the 2021 postseason by the Boston Red Sox.

When he has stayed healthy, he has flashed at the plate — most notably a walk-off grand slam against the Seattle Mariners in May — but has struggled to sustain that success throughout an entire season.

Orioles begin busy offseason with savvy Franchy Cordero pickup

In six major-league seasons (726 plate appearances), the left-handed hitting Cordero has hit .219/.290/.386 with 21 home runs and 74 RBI. He has primarily played left field and first base, though has experience playing all outfield spots with the San Diego Padres, Kansas City Royals and Red Sox.

It starts an offseason that is expected to be busy for the Orioles, who have looked for a starting pitcher, as well as had internal conversations about the high-priced shortstops.

With a core featuring Adley Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson, among others, the Orioles are in prime position to contend for years to come in the American League. Considering that each is signed to rookie contracts, it gives general manager Mike Elias additional room for flexibility when considering offseason moves.

But the Cordero signing is a smart move for the Orioles and comes at virtually zero risk.

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