Report on LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

As reported yesterday, the Orioles have agreed to sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz to a Major League Deal.

I reach out to Don Olsen and he provided us with a brief scouting report on the 25 year old southpaw:

Long arm and delivery (high 3/4) gives him a tough angle for left-handed hitters to pick up and he has a decent plane when he fully extends…which is his problem. He is very inconsistent with his delivery, fails to get his weight over and leaves a lot up – If they can streamline it, he has potential. Flashes a 55 grade 11/6 curveball that could be an out pitch. 55 fastball that sometimes jumps into 60 grade. Command was 45, point of emphasis for him to stick on the professional level.

(refer to the 20-80 scouting scale if you are wondering what a 55 or 60 grade means)

De La Cruz looks to be a solid pickup for the Orioles bullpen. It is possible that his arrival may lead to the departure of another lefty out of the pen. Those players that may now be expendable are Brian Matusz, Troy Patton, T.J. McFarland, Zach Britton, Mike Belfiore and Chris Jones.

Matusz is due to make $3MM in 2014, while Patton and Britton are out of options. McFarland, Belfiore and Jones can all still be optioned to the minors. It will be interesting to see what direction the Orioles decide to go here. They surely cannot keep all of these lefties, although their depth is now solid at that position.

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff W L ERA G SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2006 17 Indians GULF Rk CLE 1 2 10.98 9 0 19.2 32 29 24 2 13 15 2.288 14.6 0.9 5.9 6.9 1.15
2007 18 Indians GULF Rk CLE 3 0 0.50 3 0 18.0 7 1 1 1 2 20 0.500 3.5 0.5 1.0 10.0 10.00
2007 18 Mahoning Valley NYPL A- CLE 2 4 3.98 12 0 54.1 41 27 24 5 34 53 1.380 6.8 0.8 5.6 8.8 1.56
2008 19 Lake County SALL A CLE 8 4 1.69 18 0 95.2 71 23 18 2 34 96 1.098 6.7 0.2 3.2 9.0 2.82
2008 19 Kinston CARL A+ CLE 3 2 6.44 8 0 29.1 35 22 21 1 25 36 2.045 10.7 0.3 7.7 11.0 1.44
2008 19 Akron EL AA CLE 1 0 7.20 1 0 5.0 4 4 4 1 3 4 1.400 7.2 1.8 5.4 7.2 1.33
2009 20 Indians ARIZ Rk CLE 0 2 9.39 3 0 7.2 10 8 8 1 5 5 1.957 11.7 1.2 5.9 5.9 1.00
2009 20 Kinston CARL A+ CLE 2 0 1.50 2 0 12.0 6 2 2 1 2 19 0.667 4.5 0.8 1.5 14.2 9.50
2010 21 Kinston CARL A+ CLE 2 2 2.91 6 0 34.0 22 14 11 3 8 28 0.882 5.8 0.8 2.1 7.4 3.50
2010 21 Akron EL AA CLE 5 6 5.77 20 0 93.2 98 68 60 12 64 77 1.730 9.4 1.2 6.1 7.4 1.20
2011 22 Akron EL AA CLE 5 6 4.19 23 2 86.0 70 42 40 3 57 95 1.477 7.3 0.3 6.0 9.9 1.67
2012 23 Erie EL AA DET 5 8 4.92 30 0 115.1 115 65 63 16 50 92 1.431 9.0 1.2 3.9 7.2 1.84
2013 24 Chattanooga SOUL AA LAD 0 0 0.00 3 0 5.0 4 1 0 0 0 6 0.800 7.2 0.0 0.0 10.8
2013 24 Albuquerque PCL AAA LAD 3 1 2.89 47 7 62.1 62 23 20 3 35 78 1.556 9.0 0.4 5.1 11.3 2.23
8 Seasons 40 37 4.18 185 9 638.0 577 329 296 51 332 624 1.425 8.1 0.7 4.7 8.8 1.88

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Tucker began operating Orioles-Nation.com in October 2013. He has been writing and reporting on the Orioles for an extensive period of time, dedicating most of his energy to the minor league side. He is also a member of the Baseball Prospectus Prospect Evaluation Team. Outside of baseball, Tucker also works as a Government Contractor for Contracting Resources Group, Inc. He has appeared as a radio guest on Fox 1370 and WNST 1570. Tucker writes and updates all player reports at Orioles-Nation.com and can be contacted at tuckerblair1989@gmail.com. Follow Tucker on Twitter @TuckerBlairON. Email Tucker at tblair@orioles-nation.com.