The team was expected to announce a two-year, $15 million agreement with the former Oakland Athletics closer on Friday, but a mysterious finding in Balfour's physical has put the deal "in serious jeopardy," reports Kubatko. Orioles general manager Dan Duquette apparently will instead use that time to answer questions regarding the issue.
If the Orioles decide against working things out with Balfour, they could turn their attention to another free-agent closer such as Fernando Rodney or Chris Perez, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun.
Balfour, who turns 36 later this month, underwent surgery on his right knee prior to the 2013 season, but otherwise has a pretty clean injury history of late. He hasn't had any issues with his arm since 2006 and has been one of baseball's most reliable relievers during that stretch.
The Orioles traded their former closer, Jim Johnson, to the Athletics on Dec. 2. At an average annual value of $7.5 million, Balfour's proposed contract would cost the O's more than $3 million fewer than what Johnson is estimated to make through an arbitration raise next season.