Ranking the Baltimore Orioles’ Top 10 Prospects Heading into 2014

1 of 11

Ranking the Baltimore Orioles’ Top 10 Prospects Heading into 2014

ss
Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

The Baltimore Orioles made their biggest free agent splash with the announcement that they would sign closer Grant Balfour, previously of the Oakland Athletics. This is a big deal with them having recently traded Jim Johnson and will give them more seasons of a good closer whereas Johnson was probably going to be traded during the next season or leave as a free agent in 2014 anyway. What they didn’t do was anything big about the pitching staff.

Many might wonder why that is but I think at least some of the answers will be found within the numbered ranks of the top ten Orioles prospects slideshow you are looking at. Of the top ten prospects for the O’s, six of them have either already made a short debut or are expected to do so sometime during the 2014 season. Four of those are pitchers but I don’t want to spoil the numbers before we really get into looking at each player.

Suffice it to say that the Orioles probably want to avoid a huge starting pitcher signing because they want to ensure they do not block the path of their many promising youngsters coming through the farm system. Let us have a look at them then without any more delay. Feel free to leave a comment below in the comments section if you have something to add or subtract about the players listed.

David Miller is a Senior Writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @davidmillerrant, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

Related:

Baltimore Orioles Very Confident in Ability to Sign Grant Balfour

New York Mets Rumors: Could Daniel Murphy be Traded to Baltimore Orioles?

Baltimore Orioles are Second Fiddle in Rajai Davis Sweepstakes

2 of 11

10 – Zachary Davies

ss
Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Davis is a right hander just recently getting started in the minor league system. He has very good stuff and good movement to go along with it which could send him up the ladder very quickly.

3 of 11

9 – Francisco Peguero

ss
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Peguero has spent two abbreviated periods of time in the majors with the San Francisco Giants. They non-tendered him in 2013 however and the Orioles picked him up. He still ranks this high in their system because of his natural power. He still has a lot of work to do to get his overall hitting approach better but he might get the chance to do it in the majors.

4 of 11

8 – Branden Kline

ss
Kyle Laferriere-USA TODAY Sports

Kline is very promising with a good mix of fastball, curve, slider and changeup. He has the tools to be someone very special but needs to work on his command in order to get further up the ladder.

5 of 11

7 – Tim Berry

ss
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Berry’s career started with Tommy John surgery but that is a distant memory now as the left hander gets his career heading in the right direction. The most recent season saw him bring down a respectable 3.85 ERA.

6 of 11

6 – Mike Wright

ss
Derick Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Wright is a right hander with a good bunch of pitches to his credit. He is tons of promise which showed up in his 2013 numbers of a 3.11 ERA and a good low WHIP as well.

7 of 11

5 – Jonathan Schoop

ss
Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Schoop appears to be the heir apparent to the second base job in the major leagues and could get a chance to fill the role in 2014. The 5 games he spent in MLB in 2013 saw one home run with a .286 batting average.

8 of 11

4 – Hunter Harvey

ss
Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Harvey was the 22nd overall draft pick in the 2013 MLB draft. They liked what they saw in his opening season of eight games where he debuted with an ERA of 1.78. He is without a doubt going to be on his way up.

9 of 11

3 – Eduardo Rodriguez

ss
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

This lefty has a good mix of fastball, slider and changeup. He could get a shot in 2014 with the big league club in one place or another but he needs to work on everything a little bit more in all likelihood.

10 of 11

2 – Dylan Bundy

ss
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Bundy was looking ready for MLB competition in 2013 before going down with Tommy John surgery. He still only dropped from the number one prospect to number two. It is very possible that he will get a short rehab stint before receiving another shot at MLB.

11 of 11

1 – Kevin Gausman

ss
Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Though he had a rough few outings in 2013, Gausman’s potential up-side is still considerable. He has a good fastball and changeup but his breaking stuff lags behind a little bit. The main thing he will need to do in MLB is keep the ball in the yard.

Around the Web