Minor league notes and O's organizational leaders (updated)

ANAHEIM, Calif. - As the calender turns to May, the Orioles' four full-season minor league teams have a combined record of 46-45. Triple-A Norfolk is 11-10, with Double-A Bowie 11-11, Single-A Frederick 8-16 and Single-A Delmarva at 16-8. The Shorebirds remain in first place by two games over three other teams in their division of the South Atlantic League. Meanwhile, for a 28th round draft ... read more

Austin Hays is back at Bowie, adding polish to his offensive game

When I interviewed outfielder Austin Hays before the game Wednesday night at Double-A Bowie, his batting average was just .160 in his first six games of the year. You knew Hays would start hitting soon, but you couldn't know then that it would be just hours away. But during Bowie's win over Erie that night, Hays batted four times. He lined a single to center ... read more

A look at Norfolk's roster ahead of tonight's season opener

Three of the Orioles' four full-season minor league affiliates began a new season last night, and Triple-A Norfolk starts its season tonight. The Tides will host the Gwinnett Stripers at 7:05 p.m. Norfolk starts the year with a six-game homestand at Harbor Park. Here is the Tides final opening day roster, which was announced today: Pitchers: Jayson Aquino, Josh Edgin, Andrew Faulkner, Donnie Hart, David ... read more

The Orioles' minor league break-camp rosters

After the final minor league exhibition games yesterday and an intrasquad game today at Twin Lakes Park, the Orioles have set the minor league break-camp rosters for their four full-season affiliates, which begin play next week. The players are beginning to head north to play at Triple-A Norfolk, Double-A Bowie, Single-A Frederick and Single-A Delmarva. These rosters are not final, and changes could still be ... read more

After long road back, Branden Kline again is chasing his big league dream

For Orioles pitching prospect Branden Kline, the long road back from Tommy John surgery was even longer than expected. Kline's last game for an O's affiliate was with Double-A Bowie on May 20, 2015. He left a start at Trenton after just 1 2/3 innings. It later led to surgery on Oct. 8, 2015. When Kline reported to spring training in 2017, he expected to ... read more

O's top pick DL Hall preps for his first full season of pro ball

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles' 2017 top draft pick, prep lefty pitcher DL Hall, is very excited about beginning his first full season of pro ball. He's ready for a lot of baseball. "I've heard numerous stories about the long grind of the season," Hall said Wednesday morning during an interview at Twin Lakes Park. "But I could not be more excited to get in ... read more

O's 2016 top pick Cody Sedlock is fully healthy at minors camp

SARASOTA, Fla. - For Orioles 2016 top draft pick, right-handed pitcher Cody Sedlock, his first full season of pro baseball did not go as planned. He spent two stints on the disabled list, injured for the first time in his life. He also could look at a stat sheet that he may not have liked, also probably for the first time in his life. He ... read more

Taking a guess at the minor league pitching rotations

SARASOTA, Fla. - On Friday we took a shot at projecting the rotation for Single-A Delmarva. It seems the Orioles have discussed using seven pitchers as starters with the Shorebirds. They would pitch as part of a five- or six-man rotation. The seven that we could see in Salisbury include include 2017 top draft pick left-hander DL Hall along with fellow 2017 picks Zac Lowther, ... read more

After farm apprenticeship, Chance Sisco looks for big league shot

You could once find scouts that felt there was a good possibility that Chance Sisco would never catch in the majors. But he's already done that. You could also find some that said he is the future catcher of the Orioles. He is still trying to become that. Drafted by the Orioles with the 61st overall pick out of a California High School in 2013, ... read more

Yefry Ramírez made nice first impression with his new team

For now, he might get lost in the shuffle amid dozens of pitchers in spring training. But after being acquired by the Orioles last July 31, right-hander Yefry Ramírez might have a shot to make the big leagues during the 2018 season. He was 10-3 with a 3.41 ERA for Double-A Trenton when the Orioles acquired him from the New York Yankees for international bonus ... read more

Orioles announce minor league staff for 2018 season

The Orioles today announced their minor league staff for the 2018 season. Ron Johnson will return to manage at Triple-A Norfolk and Gary Kendall is back with Double-A Bowie. Ryan Minor is now the skipper at Single-A Frederick and Buck Britton is a first-year manager at Single-A Delmarva. Among the short-season clubs, Kevin Bradshaw will manage at Single-A Aberdeen, Carlos Tosca is skipper for the ... read more

A look at the player development forum at FanFest

You probably have noticed that we enjoy writing about and covering the minor leagues here. So that was one of the many reasons I listened in with interest during the player development fan forum at FanFest on Saturday. This was a chance, during a 20-minute session, for fans to address topics on the farm and question Orioles executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette, ... read more

Buck Britton on getting the manager's job with Delmarva

The Orioles now have two Bucks managing in the organization. At their hot stove banquet last night in Salisbury, Md., the Single-A Delmarva Shorebirds announced that Buck Britton will be their manager in 2018. The older brother of Orioles closer Zach Britton, Buck was drafted by the club in the 35th round of the 2008 draft. After a nine-year playing career in the minors, the ... read more

Rankings and even more rankings talk

Yesterday was a big day in prospect land, as Baseball America released its top 100 prospects list and ESPN's Keith Law released his second 50 (subscription required). His top 50 will be released today. For the first time since 2014, the Orioles have three on the Baseball America top 100. Austin Hays was ranked No. 21, with Chance Sisco at No. 68 and Ryan Mountcastle ... read more

A look at another top 10 Orioles prospects list (updated)

As some national top 100 prospects lists are about to come out, another outlet has released a new listing of its top Orioles players. Baseball Prospectus released its list of the Orioles' top 10 prospects last week. Here is the list, from top to bottom. I add my own comments and notes and also pose a question or questions about each player heading into next ... read more

Prospect profile: Steve Wilkerson elevates his game with a solid year

When the Orioles drafted senior second baseman Steve Wilkerson in the eighth round out of Clemson in 2014, the odds seemed long that he would ever make the major leagues. But coming off his best year yet - which ended with a strong performance in the Arizona Fall League - Wilkerson's big league dream is within reach at this point. He showed defensive versatility this ... read more

Prospect profile: Ademar Rifaela had breakout '17 (plus other notes)

When you talk about outfield prospects on the Orioles farm, he can get overlooked among players like Austin Hays, Cedric Mullins and DJ Stewart. But Ademar Rifaela had a breakout 2017 season. Producing much better stats than he had earlier in his career, the 23-year-old corner outfielder was named the Carolina League MVP at Single-A Frederick. Over 126 games, he hit .284/.358/.500 with an OPS ... read more

O's Brian Graham on DL Hall, Cody Sedlock, Keegan Akin and more

Don't be fooled by a 6.97 ERA for the kid. That came in just 10 1/3 innings in five August outings in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League for left-hander DL Hall. The Orioles selected Hall with their first pick in June in the draft. He was taken with the 21st pick in the First-Year Player Draft and signed to a $3 million bonus. Hall, who ... read more

Scott, Mountcastle named to AFL Fall Stars Game (FanFest note)

Two Orioles prospects have been chosen to participate in the Arizona Fall League's Fall Stars Game, which airs Saturday night on MLB Network. Left-hander Tanner Scott and infielder Ryan Mountcastle are included on the East Team. They're playing for the Salt River Rafters in the AFL. Scott is 0-2 with a 7.71 ERA in three starts with the Rafters. He's allowed six earned runs (seven ... read more

Presenting a top 10 Orioles prospects list

Baseball America started to roll out its latest top 10 prospects lists for major league teams this week. Before too long, we'll see a new Orioles list. But today, I'm taking my own shot at a top 10 list for the club. These are my own thoughts and rankings, and for this one, I didn't solicit a single opinion from a scout or team official ... read more

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