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Thursday, August 29, 2013
Report: O's claim Josh Willingham

ESPN.com news services

The Baltimore Orioles have placed a waiver claim on Minnesota Twins slugger Josh Willingham, the Baltimore Sun reported.

Baltimore claimed Willingham on Wednesday afternoon, according to the paper, meaning that the Orioles will have until Friday afternoon to agree to a trade with the Twins.

The Orioles (70-61), who are chasing their second consecutive postseason berth, have claimed several players during the trade waiver process, according to the Sun.

The struggling Twins (57-74) are more motivated to trade Justin Morneau, a free agent after this season, and have discussed dealing the first baseman to the Orioles, the newspaper reported.

But Willingham, who is under contract through next season, evidently is a more appealing target to the Orioles.

Willingham, 34, has struggled through an injury-plagued season in Minnesota, batting a career-low .212 with 12 home runs and 45 RBIs. The veteran outfielder enjoyed a strong season with the Twins in 2012, when he batted .260 with 35 homers and 110 RBIs -- both career highs.

The right-handed Willingham would be a welcome addition to the Orioles, who regularly play two left-handed hitters -- Nick Markakis and Nate McLouth -- in the corner outfield spots. Baltimore also has been lacking consistent production from its designated hitters throughout the season.