The defense has been shaky on the farm

Here is a stat that is not good for the Orioles minor leagues.

All four O's affiliates lead their respective leagues in errors. Norfolk has made 47 errors, most in the International League. Bowie leads its league with 49; Frederick tops the Carolina League with 58; and Delmarva has committed a whopping 77 errors. That is the most in the Sally League.

The shortstop position has become an issue on the O's farm, but the club has taken some steps to fix the problem.

Pedro Florimon, a member of the Orioles 40-man roster, leads all Eastern League shortstops with 13 errors at Bowie.

It's tough for a staff that includes groundball pitchers like Zach Britton and Chorye Spoone. Recently the Baysox added Carlos Rojas to the roster and he is now getting some starts at short over Florimon and is considered a definite upgrade on defense.

In fairness to Florimon, this is his first year at Double-A and he hit a Grand Slam Sunday to help Bowie win a game. But he has struggled on offense and defense to date.

At Delmarva, Dominican shortstop prospect Garabez Rosa has been hitting well at .303 but had a recent stretch of making at least one error in eight consecutive games. That streak ended Monday night.

But he made 10 errors during that stretch and has 19 on the year, most among Sally League shortstops.

The O's sent last year's second-round pick, Mychal Givens, to Delmarva on Monday. But that was not for Givens to unseat Rosa as the Shorebirds' shortstop.

Both young players need to play and will. Givens has been playing well at extended spring and the O's decided he needed a bigger challenge. His joining that Delmarva club is not related to Rosa's fielding issues, according to club sources.

Fans have been waiting to see how Givens will do when he joined an affiliate and that time has come.

But these defensive issues on the farm will be worth tracking the rest of this year. The O's don't want some of their top young pitchers' progress derailed because someone didn't field a ground ball. At the same time, the pitchers sometimes need to pick up their teammates when they make errors.

Still, leading each league in errors is not a stat to be proud of and the shortstop position has turned into one to track the rest of this season in the O's minors.

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