Keith Law farm system rankings: Orioles are 17th

Here is a mild surprise to me: Keith Law of ESPN.com rates the Orioles' farm system 17th out of 30 in baseball. Frankly, with all the criticism the Orioles' farm system has been getting, I would have expected a ranking a little lower, maybe in the 20-25 range.

The Orioles, according to Law's ranking, which cannot be linked as premium content, still rank fourth among American League East teams.

2nd - Tampa Bay
3rd - Toronto
10th - New York
17th - Orioles
18th - Boston

I was shocked to see that Law rated the Orioles' farm system ahead of Washington. He ranked the Nationals 21st after they dealt several top prospects to Oakland in the deal to acquire Gio Gonzalez. I believe that Baseball America rated the Nats first in all of baseball before the Gonzalez deal.

A few moments ago, Law was a guest on "The Kenny and Vinny Show" on 105.7 FM The Fan in Baltimore and he made a few comments on the Orioles' farm system.

"They have a couple of very high-upside guys in the minors. I think Manny Machado is a potential superstar. I think Dylan Bundy is a top-of-the-rotation (pitcher), a true No. 1 starter. Even though he's a high school kid, he's not that far away from contributing at the big league level," Law said.

"What they don't have is depth. There are not enough guys in the farm system to potentially fill out a contending big league club in the American League East. You've got to remember the standard for the Orioles is higher because of the division in which they play than it would be in any of the other five divisions.

"You can't just field a good club if you want to make the playoffs in the American League East. Even with the extra playoff team, you've got to field a great club and I don't think there is enough talent, top to bottom in this organization, for them to see that anywhere in the next four or five years."

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