I’ve said before that the Orioles outfield situation could get interesting in the next couple years. Adam Jones
is here to stay for a while, so the Orioles have one outfield spot covered. After the 2013 season, like Old Sneakers said above, Nate McLouth will be getting a fat, likely multi-year contract from a major league baseball team. Nate really is a game changer. His only flaw is that he can’t hit LHP. But, I’d let McLouth move on and use our resources elsewhere. Nick Markakis
is under the Orioles control through the 2014 season, with a club option of $17.5mil or a $2mil buyout. The Orioles may or may not exercise that option, and they may or may not re-sign him to altered conditions. Either way, there could be an opening in left field as early as 2014, and/or there could be an opening in right field as early as 2015.
Regarding current bench players and AAA players, I don’t believe Chris Dickerson or Jason Pridie would handle full time jobs very effectively. Those two just seem like classic 4th outfielders. At this point, who knows what will happen to the three right-handed-hitting outfield amigos in Steve Pearce, Lew Ford, and Nolan Reimold. There future to me is unknown. Trayvon Robinson is only hitting .235/.321/.355.
IMO, the answer has been underneath us the whole time. LJ Hoes
is hitting .291/.395/.402 in AAA. Maybe he could provide the Orioles with average defense, 15 net steals, and a .275/.360/.350. I’d have an open competition for LF in 2014, but basically be giving the position to Hoes while Xavier Avery
is dangled as trade bait.
Down lower on the farm, it is disappointing to see Brendan Webb having an awful season. But in AA, Henry Urrutia
is the only currently playing for the Baysox that could make a difference. He is a weird case too. If I were GM, I’d still have him spend the rest of the year in AA, then spend at least most of 2014 in AAA, then have him contend for right field/DH in 2015. Maybe, he won’t even be that good. He wasn’t supposed to be that great when he was signed.