Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Yesterday, Jason from Ellicott City asked Buster Olney, "Can I get some encouraging words about the Orioles? We used to have the Rays to occupy the East cellar, but now we rot there." Buster responded, "This year will continue to be ugly, but along the way, you'll see Wieters and others, and next year, you'll see the best of the young pitching. That is developing into a great lineup."

Let's put a bit of data behind the assertions regarding the young pitching. Currently in the minors, eight Oriole prospects (to varying degrees) have combined to put up this line: 18-9, 200.2 IP, 2.47 ERA, 210 strikeouts, 149 hits, and 77 walks. Who are those eight pitchers? Brian Matusz (High-A), Troy Patton (AA), Brandon Erbe (AA), Jake Arrieta (AA), Chris Tillman (AAA), Jason Berken (AAA), Rich Hill (AAA) and David Hernandez (AAA). Those eight comprise 7 of the top 9 spots on the prospect rankings, and the other one, Rich Hill is on injury rehab and likely to be in the rotation in a matter of weeks. Throw in the early performances of Matt Wieters (.291/.398/.407 - don't worry about the lack of homers thus far; he's still showing good plate discipline and hitting doubles), Nolan Reimold (.386/.479/.713) and Brandon Snyder (.356/.405/.584) and there is a lot to be excited about down on the farm. Help is on the way, and it is coming quickly.

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