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MLB Baltimore Orioles

Baltimore Orioles Top Ten Prospects

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Baltimore Orioles Top Ten Prospects

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The Star-Ledger-USA TODAY Sports

The 2012 season was magical for the Baltimore Orioles. You see and hear the terminology everywhere about how great their winning season was. But one year is easy compared to repeating and repeating is easy compared to dominance. How far do the Orioles have to go to get from where they are now to the dominance that teams like the Yankees and Braves enjoyed in the 90’s? The answer is in the farm system.

To look at the Orioles farm system for these answers is to put a smile on your face is you are an Orioles fan. If you are a Yankees or Red Sox fan consider yourself on notice. The Orioles are not going anywhere. The young pitching alone has the potential to dominate the AL East for years to come. Manny Machado and others have already shown what promise there is at the everyday positions and only more follow them.

To get into detail we’ll look at the top ten prospects. You’ll take notice of the pitching for certain. The scouts for the Orioles have done a tremendous job building talent that should place the team at or near the top of all major league clubs for more than a year or two. Red Sox and Yankees, consider yourselves on notice. The Baltimore Orioles magical season isn’t going anywhere. It was just the first of many to come. Whether future AL East races are one, two or three team races over the next decade, this list proves why one of those teams will be the Orioles.

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10 - Branden Kline – RHP

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Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Branden Kline is the first of quite a few promising young pitchers in the top Baltimore Orioles prospects. Kline is a young man with a lot of promise. His fastball is lively in the low-90’s but will probably need a little more juice. That shouldn’t be a problem as he fills out and grows stronger however. The confidence he has to throw his breaking stuff in any count already is surprising and refreshing in a world where kids just want to blow heat by hitters. It takes breaking stuff to reach the big club and Kline has that.

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9 - Tim Berry – LHP

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Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

Having to recover from Tommy John surgery is a setback for pitchers at any age. Tim Berry had to deal with it after getting hurt in High School. Still he was signed by the Orioles and is only twenty-one years old as he begins to see his potential success on the horizon. He will need to solidify three good pitches and get control under control but all signs point to Berry having a good run at the MLB level.

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8 - Parker Bridwell – RHP

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Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Every team wants a great athlete at some point along their five man rotation. A lot of teams love having sinker ballers somewhere in there as well. In Parker Bridwell the Orioles have the potential for both in one man. His sinker is looking good as is his breaking stuff. If the Orioles are patient enough to allow his command and changeup to come along at pace, Bridwell could pay huge dividends in the future.

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7 - Jason Esposito – 3B

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Jason Esposito is one of those guys that comes along with a nice upside but just as big of a downside. Defensively he is strong enough to make it at the big league level for sure. Offensively is much more of a question mark. If things progress in the right direction; Esposito could certainly play daily at the hot corner in the majors. If his bat lags behind he still will make a good defensive player off the bench.

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6 - Glynn Davis – OF

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Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

It’s somewhat rare to see a quality prospect come along in the outfield that doesn’t really hit for power. That is exactly what the Orioles have in outfielder Glynn Davis. The fact that he is this high on the prospect list without a professional homerun to speak of says something about him. He is incredibly fast and a good base runner already with almost forty steals in one hundred twenty games at the class A level. If things come together nicely for Davis he will be able to fill out center field and the top spot in the order in a couple of years.

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5 - Xavier Avery – OF

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Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Xavier Avery has all of the tools it takes to be called a successful five tool player one day. He has speed and hits for a little power while patrolling the outfield extremely well. The outlook is bright for the future of this guy to show up on the big scene in 2013 sometime. It might not even take all the way until September. Either way he needs to get there and be successful if only so someone can give him his rightful nickname: professor.

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4 - Nick Delmonico – 3B

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Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Coming from a baseball family gives Nick Delmonico a leg up on his competition within the Orioles system. His hitting approach is mature already and all he really needs is to progress at a somewhat standard pace to make a big impact in the bigs soon. He has some flexibility position wise but his abilities play best at third. There is no reason to believe Delmonico won’t hop skip and jump directly into the Orioles batting order by 2015 or 2016.

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3 - Jonathan Schoop – 2B

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Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The forth ranked second base prospect in all of baseball, Jonathan Schoop can actually play well anywhere in the infield. That is an incredibly valuable quality to have in a young player like Schoop and it will surely get him to the bigs faster than he would have. That said, he still has some progressing to do offensively. All things being healthy and okay, look for Schoop to park it in some infield spot in Baltimore within the next two years.

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2 - Kevin Gausman – RHP

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Crystal Logiudice-USA TODAY Sports

A fastball that clocks at around 94 mph with movement is a nice pitch to bank on for any young hurler. When you add a really good changeup that also has movement you are talking a golden package. Kevin Gausman’s breaking stuff isn’t as advanced as his fast and change but who cares. Those two pitches along with anything else to break things up will lead to at least a two hundred win career for Gausman and probably more if he stays healthy. He’s the real deal and Orioles fans should enjoy watching him pitch for years to come.

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1 - Dylan Bundy – RHP

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Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Being the number two prospect in the game pretty well speaks for itself. It certainly makes Dylan Bundy the number one Orioles prospect. Really he is just the first up of the long line of good young pitching prospects they have. Chances are Bundy will see starting work in 2013 for the Orioles. Bundy has outstanding breaking pitches, that’s right a curve and a slider, a great fastball and a decent change. In short, he is ready now.

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