Delmarva Shorebirds are off to their best start in eight years

Led by several 2012 Orioles draft picks, the Single-A Delmarva Shorebirds are 10-5 and off to their best 15-game start since 2005. Delmarva is in first place in the South Atlantic League’s Northern Division with a season-best, four-game win streak.

Creede Simpson, a 25th-round pick last June out of Auburn, is batting .395 with two homers, 13 RBIs and an OPS of 1.097 after hitting .234 in 62 games last year with short-season Single-A Aberdeen. Simpson is third in the league in batting, fourth in OBP and RBIs and fifth in slugging.

Joel Hutter, a 10th-round pick last season, is batting .333 with nine RBIs. Adrian Marin, last June’s third-round selection, has an average of .333. Christian Walker, the fourth-round pick in 2012, is batting .373 with two homers and nine RBIs. Wynston Sawyer, drafted in round eight in 2010, is batting .348.

The Shorebirds have scored 75 runs in 15 games, their team average of .287 ranks second in the league and their .355 OBP is fourth.

Simpson had three hits in last night’s 6-2 win over Greensboro. Delmarva had 11 hits, the sixth game in a row the Shorebirds have had 10 or more hits.

A few pitchers in the rotation are off to solid starts:

* Branden Kline, a second-round pick in 2012, is 1-0 with a 3.27 ERA.

* Josh Hader, drafted in round 19 last summer, is 1-0 with an 0.82 ERA.

* Parker Bridwell, drafted in round nine in 2010, is 1-1 with a 2.30 ERA.

* Matt Taylor, a fifth-round pick in 2011, is 1-1 with a 1.50 ERA.

Several bullpen pitchers have thrown well, including Matt Hobgood, the Orioles’ 2009 first-round pick, who has pitched 10 shutout innings allowing just four hits so far. Delmarva is fifth in team ERA in the Sally League at 3.39.

The O’s other minor league clubs also have winning records:

* Triple-A Norfolk is 9-6 and in second place.
* Double-A Bowie is 8-7 and in third place.
* Single-A Frederick is 8-5 and in first place.

Bowie has the top offense in the Eastern League and the Baysox last night became the first team in all of professional baseball (majors included) to reach 100 runs and now have 103 total on the year. Bowie is also first in the Eastern League in batting average (.310), hits (174), doubles (44), slugging (.464) and OBP (.376).

By the way, the Baysox staff poured through some old records and could not find anyone with a longer RBI streak in club history than Caleb Joseph’s current nine-game streak, which I referenced in my earlier entry today. The only other comparable streak they located in team history is Oscar Salazar with an eight-game RBI streak from 6/15/07 to 6/23/07.

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