With a month + behind us, let’s take a look at some players that could be close to earning a promotion to the next level in the O’s farm system:
Note: Most of them are down in Delmarva
Mike Yastrzemski – OF – Low-A Delmarva
Yaz has put together the type of season that you would expect from a 23-year-old in Low-A. He’s a college guy that does not have a high ceiling, but the floor is also not too far off from the ceiling. Yaz does not have any loud tools outside of a plus arm, but he has a short swing and barrels up the ball. With Frederick in need of another OF, I think it makes sense for Yaz to be called up sooner rather than later.
Drew Dosch – 3B – Low-A Delmarva
.305/.359/.359 (40/131) with 5 2B, 1 3B, 9 BB, 29 K
Dosch is in his first season playing professional baseball. The hit tool has played at the professional level, even if the power and defense are still lagging behind. He is another college guy that has benefited from an advanced hit tool and has not been challenged particularly at the Low-A level. With Hector Veloz waiting in the wings for full playing time, I think it makes sense to promote Dosch at some point. Maybe not right now, but he will see Frederick at some point in the next month or two if I had to guess.
Steven Brault – RHP – Low-A Delmarva
40.0 IP, 2.48 ERA, 31 H, 11 ER, 9 BB 41 K
Brault is a college arm that impressed me last season in Aberdeen, and scouts were buzzing about how he looked advanced and had some stuff to back it up. Nothing has changed with his time in Delmarva, as he is strolling along quite nicely. His fastball sits low 90′s with some natural life and boring action. His slider and change have potential to be average. I think Brault is the first starter in the Shorebird’s rotation to get the bump to Frederick, and he might be the one that makes the most sense at this point considering he is in his age 22 season.
Hunter Harvey – RHP – Low-A Delmarva
39.0 IP, 1.38 ERA, 19 H, 6 ER, 15 BB, 45 K
Harvey has been absolutely ridiculous this season. He is clearly too good for the Low-A level, but it is not always about how “good” a player is when it comes to development. The Orioles have him working on his change and also working on a plethora of other things such as stamina and fastball command. He will be in Frederick at some point this season, but it may not be at the pace that most fans want. In case you missed it, CJ Wittmann of Baseball Prospectus wrote this scouting report on Harvey. It will get you excited.
Jimmy Yacabonis – RHP – Low-A Delmarva
13.0 IP, 0.00 ERA, 6 H, 0 ER, 9 BB, 17 K
The Delmarva closer has done just about everything you could possibly want out of a max effort, one inning arm. He has that bulldog approach on the mound, attacking hitters with his 92-94 mph fastball. The secondary stuff lags behind and may be fringe at best, but he is not having much problem dealing with Low-A hitters. Command issues may hold him back from a promotion sooner, but he should be in Frederick’s bullpen at some point.
Dariel Alvarez – OF – Double-A Bowie
.336/.353/.538 (48/143) with 11 2B, 6 HR, 3 BB, 14 K, 2 SB
Alvarez is a free swinger, but he has quieted the noise in his hands this season and started to hit. While he has also displayed below-average recognition on spin, he has been able to barrel the ball more often than not, as displayed by the 3/14 BB/K ratio in 143 AB. His ability to play CF has also made him intriguing. While a promotion for Alvarez may be pointless at this point since I do not think the difference between AA and AAA are large, it may be something similar to what the Orioles did with Henry Urrutia last season. He has improved since last year, and that is sometimes all you can ask for.