Pre-draft Orioles Prospect Update

Pic: Patrick Cavey
Pic: Patrick Cavey

Mike Elias and the Orioles will have the 1st overall pick tomorrow as he takes his first big step in reshaping the organization with his first amateur draft as Orioles GM/Scouting Director.

Before the draft, it’s a great time to look over the organization’s current top prospects and to see who have taken a step forward, back or stayed the same. Let’s start with the top 30 prospects at the end of last year and then look at some newcomers on the prospects scene.

Top 30 Prospects at end of 2018

  1. DL Hall – LHP – The 20-year has a 15.2 K/9 rate thru his first 35 IP in Frederick. Walks are on the high side though. (Step Forward)
  2. Grayson Rodriguez – RHP – Has a 1.48 ERA and a 12.8 K/9 rate as a 19-year old in Delmarva. (Step Forward)
  3. Ryan Mountcastle – 1B – Converted to 1B, Mountcastle has smacked 11 homers and slashing .328/.351/.578/.930 thru 46 games. (Step Forward)
  4. Dean Kremer – RHP – Has only made four starts after an oblique injury that shut him down for most of spring training. (Inconclusive)
  5. Yusniel Diaz – OF – Started off slow at Bowie before a Hamstring issue made him miss over a month. Now rehabbing in Frederick. (Step back)
  6. Austin Hays – OF – Injured in spring training, he’s just starting to find his stride in Bowie where he’s slashing .293/.341/.585/.926 in 10 games (Inconclusive)
  7. Hunter Harvey – RHP – The best news is he’s been healthy, but he’s been inconsistent from start to start. (Step back)
  8. Zach Lowther – LHP – Has been excellent posting a 1.66 ERA and a 8.4 K/9 in 10 AA starts. (Step Forward)
  9. Blaine Knight – RHP – Dominated in five Delmarva starts before getting promoted to Frederick. (Step Forward)
  10. Brenan Hanifee – RHP – Has struggled with his command with his walk rate shooting up to 5.9 BB/9 in Frederick. (Step back)
  11. Keegan Akin – LHP – Has held his own in AAA with a 4.02 ERA and a 10.9 K/9 rate. (Neutral)
  12. Luis Ortiz – RHP – Has put up a 7.09 ERA in ten starts and has really continued his slide down the prospect scene. (Major step back back)
  13. Ryan McKenna – CF – Continues to struggle offensively in AA although he has shown some flashes of power. (Step back)
  14. Branden Kline – RHP – Has been promoted to Baltimore and seen some success though he’s been hurt by the home run ball. (Step Forward)
  15. Drew Rom – LHP – Has put up a 1.49 ERA and a 11.7 K/9 in 42.1 IP in Delmarva as a 19-year old. (Step forward)
  16. Zach Pop – RHP – Will undergo Tommy John surgery and will miss the rest of the season. (Step Back)
  17. Dillon Tate – RHP – Hasn’t pitched since April 29th after going on the IL but wasn’t pitching all that well before. (Step back)
  18. Rylan Bannon – 3B/2B – Has been ok, but nothing spectacular. Still hasn’t shown much power since coming to AA. (Neutral)
  19. Adam Hall – 2B/SS – Slashing .326/.407/.430/.837 with 14 SB in 222 PAs thru his first 50 games in Delmarva. (Step forward)
  20. Michael Baumann – RHP – Strikeout rate has spiked to a 14.1 K/9 and his walks have fallen to a career best 2.5 BB/9 in 8 starts at Frederick. (Step forward)
  21. Alex Wells – LHP – Has put up a 1.62 ERA and has held batters to a .210 batting average in 8 Bowie starts. (Step forward)
  22. Jean Carlos Encarnacion – 3B – Continues to struggle offensively since coming over in the trade. (Step back)
  23. Cadyn Grenier – SS – Still is having a hard time hitting professional pitching, slashing .242/.355/.344/.699 in 210 PAs in Delmarva. (Neutral)
  24. DJ Stewart – OF – Crushed it in AAA and is now in Baltimore as the regular RFer. (Step forward)
  25. Jean Carmona – SS – Wasn’t able to make a full season club and will most likely start the year as the Aberdeen SS. (Neutral)
  26. Cody Carroll – RHP – Experienced lower velocity this spring and then had lower back discomfort. Has yet to pitch in 2019. (Step back)
  27. Brett Cumberland – C – Has struggled this year both offensively and defensively at Bowie. (Step back)
  28. John Means – LHP – Huge improvements to his changeup and a bump in velocity has made him the Orioles best starter by far. (Huge step forward)
  29. Cameron Bishop – LHP – Both his strike out rate and BB rates have gone up. (Neutral)
  30. Matthias Dietz – RHP – Walking more than a batter an inning and has put up a 12 ERA. (Step back)

New on the Scene? (Not in any order)

  1. Mason McCoy – SS – Slashing .359/.410/.488/.899 overall this year splitting the year between Frederick and Bowie.
  2. Robert Neustrom – LF – Was slashing 329/.429/.529/.957 before going on the IL on May 1st.
  3. JC Escarra – 1B – Jumped over Delmarva to Frederick and has slashed .259/.369/.434/.802 in 48 games.
  4. Ofelky Peralta – RHP – Perhaps back on the scene? A 1.99 ERA, and a career high 11.9 K/9 and career low 3.8 BB/9 in 45.1 IP in Delmarva. Still only 22-years old.
  5. Bruce Zimmerman – LHP – Lefty who came over in Gausman trade and increased his velocity and has a 2.94 ERA in a 8.8 K/9 in 9 Bowie starts.
  6. Cody Sedlock – RHP – Back on the scene after putting up a 1.44 ERA and a 8.5 K/9 in 8 Bowie starts.

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Tony has owned and operated Orioles Hangout since 1996 and is well known for his knowledge of the Baltimore Orioles organization from top to bottom. He's a frequent guest on Baltimore-area sports radio stations and can be heard regularly on the 105.7 FM The Fan. His knowledge and contacts within the Orioles minor league system and the major league baseball scouting industry is unparalleled in the Baltimore media and is known as an expert on the Orioles prospects.