Seems as though Parker Bridwell is still struggling with consistency. Any idea if Orioles are thinking of putting him in relief and just focus on a couple of pitches.
The most maddening player in the Orioles’ entire system. I love Parker’s arsenal and overall ability. There is no denying his talent. However, he has certainly struggled to find consistency. I have now seen two of his starts on the year, and have reports from the others.
Over at Baseball Prospectus ($$), I wrote my thoughts on his first start. He has improved mechanics; keeps himself compact and has good drive with a solid arm action. I also heard that Bridwell has kept himself more composed on the mound, and I can agree with this. The problem has always been consistency, as stated in your question. I have his fastball 93-94 mph, 91-93 mph, and heard one of his road starts he was sitting 87-90 mph. Obviously, that is a tremendous amount of inconsistency. The power curve and change are also inconsistent. One start, his curve was flashing plus and showing great depth. The next start is was loopy and the change was the pitch showing well.
My overall thoughts on Bridwell stay the same though. Keep him in the rotation for now. Allow him to continue as a starter at Frederick, and the Orioles can move him to the bullpen in the next year or two once he gets to AA. He will grow more as a pitcher by sticking in a rotation and battling through a lineup three times a night. In the long run, I do think Bridwell ends up as a reliever, and he could be a damn good one.
– Tucker Blair
Troy Patton will soon be back. Who’s the odd man out to make room for him?
An interesting roster question and one that I was surprised the Orioles put themselves in when they tendered him a contract. I figured Patton a candidate for non-tendering in the Offseason. In the current Bullpen, no lefty makes sense to get rid of; Zach Britton and Brian Matusz are key pieces of the bullpen. Out of the righties, Josh Stinson is the only that makes sense. Tommy Hunter, Darren O’Day, and Ryan Webb aren’t leaving. However, Stinson has no options remaining so he would have to be exposed to waivers if the Orioles decided to send him down for Patton. Also, Stinson serves as the mop up long man, something Patton cannot pull off. The other option is going with an 8 man bullpen. Buck has stated multiple times that he would go with a 13 man staff. However, with Chris Davis now on the DL, I do not see that being in the near future even with Manny coming back. The only other option is that they DFA Patton and hope he sneaks by waivers and stash him in AAA. My best guess is that the Orioles DFA Stinson and add Patton.
– Alex Conway
Baseball Prospectus released a new PECOTA Takes on Prospects this week, and the highest Orioles prospect in the rankings not named Gausman was Wynston Sawyer, who I’d never even heard of before. Did PECOTA find a diamond in the rough, or is this just some statistical fluke?
This is an interesting topic and one that I am surprised has not received more buzz. I have reached out to Andrew Koo over at Baseball Prospectus to provide an answer on this, and BP will be running a second article to look at some of the discrepancies and flaws that might be tied into the projection system.
Speaking of Wynston Sawyer, I do think this is more of a statistical fluke than a diamond in the rough; and that is not a knock on Sawyer by any means. Baseball is certainly not easy, which is why Sawyer as a top 50 productive prospect was eye-raising. He does a few things well, such as barreling the ball and plate discipline, but the power has not always been present in-game and the defense is inconsistent. I think the main flaw being targeted here is how Sawyer went from 2 to 8 HR from 2012-2013. He slugged .284 in that first season in the SALLY. It’s a large jump number-wise. More on this topic will come along shortly, and I will certainly pass it along.
– Tucker Blair