13 June 2018

Current State Of The Orioles: Really Bad

The Orioles have so many problems that it's exhausting to think about. But, if you want to keep things simple, you can group them into two main categories (without even getting into anything coach or front office related). First, the major league team is in shambles. At 19-47, the Orioles have three fewer wins than any other team. Only one other team, the Royals, has been outscored by more runs (-114 vs. -112). The Orioles are a very bad baseball team that struggles across the board. It's hard to watch.

For reference, the 1988 Orioles (final record: 54-107) earned their 19th win on game 69 (to make them 19-50). They won their 20th game on game 72. This year's Orioles got their 19th win on game 60 (to make them 19-41). Through game 65, they're still sitting on 19 wins.

That leads to the second main issue: the future. The Orioles are not without promising talent in their farm system; however, many of their interesting prospects are not close to ready for the majors. The system also lacks high-end talent. In February, Austin Hays, Chance Sisco, and Ryan Mountcastle all landed somewhere on the notable national prospect lists. Hays was the only one of the three to be named on all five (MLB.com, Baseball America, Keith Law, Baseball Prospectus, and FanGraphs).

Since then, Sisco has graduated to the majors, and while he's held his own in semi-regular work, it would be a stretch to say he looks like anything more than a decent player. He doesn't look like a star. That's not bad, of course; it's just not great.

On Monday, FanGraphs released their updated top 131 prospect list. In February, Hays placed 90th on the list, and that was it for the Orioles. There is not a single O's prospect on this new version. Hays has dropped off entirely because he's struggling this year at Double-A Bowie, with a batting line of .224/.259/.374 (72 wRC+).

Now, the FanGraphs list isn't everything. No prospect list is the end-all, be-all. Mountcastle and maybe another prospect could still land on one or more of the national lists (he was on three last time). But Hays falling back to earth is disappointing and untimely, yet it shows just how much more talent the Orioles need in their farm system. No single player is going to solve this mess. Some things that are happening in the lower levels of the O's system are encouraging -- with, for example, Ryan McKenna, Michael Baumann, Zac Lowther, and others -- but it's not enough.

Almost everyone on this current O's roster should be a trade chip. The Orioles need to do whatever they can to add youth and talent nearly everywhere in the minors. Players that are close to major league ready would be preferred, but teams aren't just giving those prospects away. The O's need high-ceiling talent. They should be able to get a couple of those types by dealing away Manny Machado, Zach Britton, and others. Every possibility should be explored.

In the meantime, enjoy everything Machado, Britton, Adam Jones, and others do in an Orioles uniform before they're gone. And don't take a competitive game, home run, or solid defensive game for granted. One day things will get better for the O's, but it might be a while. Settle in.

8 comments:

Aaron Smith said...

The games are brutal to watch but this is clearly better than the Orioles pedaling around .500 and fighting for the 2nd wild card slot. Hopefully this season will result in a complete overhaul of the current management system as well.

Jan Frel said...

They are so far from being good

PTCello said...

Unfortunately, almost all of the assets that we were counting on trading have been bad this season.
Who wants Brach as a closer? Or even Givens? Or O’Day?
Britton walked three guys last night. We couldn’t get any worthwhile offer for him even last season(at least as far as was reported) why think he will bring back as much or more now?
We have exactly 2 guys with significant value : Manny and Bundy, and by all accounts, Bundy is untouchable.
Everyone else is floundering.
What this team needs, in addition to the wholesale house cleaning at the top, is better communication between the various departments, and a wholesale reworking of the drafting and scouting evaluators.
Because we’re not going to get anything near enough to fill our gaps with what we have to offer this season.

Aaron Smith said...

Let me ask this question: How much of the Orioles horrible play this year can be attributed to an aberration? Think about it. Most projections for the 2018 Orioles season hovered somewhere between slightly below average to average. But none were worst team in MLB. Are Manchini, Schoop, Sisco, Beckham, really this bad at hitting with very little chance of improving again? How about viewing this season as an anomaly that won't be repeated to this level?

aj barrell said...

Machado is gone after this year.Its Only gonna be far worse going forward. Theres zero chance this team is competitive next year or over the next 2 or 3 years at least. Tear it down hope for some prospect luck ( actually sign some international talent sigh) and hope the next window comes faster then planed ala the Braves.

Beckham was below replacement level for years before being solid in half a season last year.

Manchini is at best an average player, hes scratch at 1st below by alot in LF. Probably an average hitter or slightly above.

Schoop is anywhere from average to above average but would be the best position player on this team ( Not good)

Sisco looks like he might be an average hitter but neg defender which is a backup catcher on a contending team.

When thats your best 4 position players and honestly the pitching is worse probably thats scary.

aj barrell said...

Also another way to put it. The yankees have multiple people on there ML bench and in triple A that would arguably be the best position player on the O"s next year.

O's Lifer said...

I don't get it same team as last year,thought they upgraded rotation Cobb,Cashner better than Ubaldo and Miley.I was thinking 70-75 wins not this trainwreck what happened ?

aj barrell said...

They got alot of regression (Beckham) and a few people arent playing well. The rotation outside od Bundy has been even worse then assumed (woof that Cobb deal). I didnt think this years team was worst in baseball bad.

Next years tho after Machado leaves probably will be the worst team in baseball.