Beavers on Yelich comp, Fabian on not signing with Boston (plus O's win)

Cal outfielder Dylan Beavers, the No. 33 overall pick in the MLB Draft last Sunday night by the Orioles, once had dreams of being a two-way player in college.

Cal was going to use him as both a pitcher and a position player. His fastball was touching 92 and 93 mph and the coaches saw promise in him as a two-way talent. But that didn’t last too long once he got on campus, he told me during an interview for MASN here on Saturday.

“It was right after the fall of my freshman year, so before the (spring) season even started. It kind of seemed like I was going to end up playing the outfield full time. I did warm up on opening weekend but once Covid and everything happened, I had a ton of time to work on my swing, my defense and stuff. And just went full time as a hitter. I definitely have more of a future as an outfielder," Beavers said. 

This season Beavers, as a fourth-year junior, batted .291/.426/.634 with 16 doubles, three triples, 17 homers, 62 runs and 50 RBIs. He hit 18 homers in 2021 and 36 for his Cal career.

He was at Camden Yards Saturday to sign his first pro contract and see the ballpark before he heads to Florida for O’s orientation and the likelihood that his first pro games will come in the rookie-level Florida Complex League.

Beavers' swing is very similar to that of Christian Yelich, a former National League MVP from the Milwaukee Brewers.

“I didn’t mean to (swing just like Yelich), it just worked out that way. But I do see it somewhat with similarities in the swing. It’s an honor to be compared to him, for sure,” he said.

When asked what strengths he might bring to the O’s organization, Beavers first cited aspects of his game you cannot put a statistic on.

“I think I’m a good presence in the dugout and a good teammate. Then I bring power, good defense and hoping to improve upon a lot of things moving forward, but definitely bring some power,” he said.

University of Florida outfielder Jud Fabian was also here after signing his first pro contract with the Orioles on Saturday.

In 66 games with the Gators he hit .239/.414/.598/1.012 with 24 homers and 55 RBIs. He hit 20 homers in the 2021 season and was Boston’s No. 40 overall pick last year but didn’t sign. The O’s had interest in him with pick No. 41, but Boston selected him first. He told reporters yesterday that Boston drafted him without talking much at all to him and he knew the O’s had solid interest last year.

“The Orioles, talked to them last year. We ended up having an agreement in place. Then when they (Boston) took me it came as a surprise so I went back to school and had the chance to play with my brother, who played third base at Florida," he said. 

So yeah, Fabian does indicate that had the Orioles picked him last year he probably would have signed with the team then.

“There is no way to know what would have happened, but I think I was ready to go into pro ball last year, yeah. Things didn’t work out so I got to improve my game a little more and now I’m really ready for pro ball," Fabian said. 

Fabian believes playing in the SEC will truly prepare him for pro ball.

“That is the best conference in America, in college baseball. You get everyone’s best Friday, Saturday and Sunday, so, being able to compete against those guys, really good players, that prepares every guy who goes from the SEC into pro ball," he said. 

What a win for the Orioles: The Orioles have had a number of dramatic wins and comeback wins this year, and last night's had to be among the biggest and the best. Add it to the list of the top wins of the season as they rallied from 3-0 down to beat the New York Yankees 6-3 and even the series at a win each.

The Orioles (47-47) have won 12 of 15, 17 of 25 and 23 of their past 35 games. They are 9-1 in their past 10 home games and 6-3 in their last nine at home versus American League East teams. They are 13-11 overall in their past 24 AL East games.

Yankees starter Gerrit Cole took the loss, allowing four runs over six-plus innings. Cole is now 9-3 with a 3.09 ERA, and two of his losses have come against Baltimore.

The Orioles bullpen was throwing big-time gas late in this game as Bryan Baker, Cionel Pérez, Félix Bautista and Jorge López each pitched a scoreless inning.

Baker's fastball averaged 97.4 mph and topped at 98.4. Pérez averaged 97.7 mph and touched 98.5. Bautista was throwing major smoke, averaging 100.5 mph and touching 101.9. And López averaged 98.7 mph and topped at 100.6.

O's No. 8 and No. 9 hitters Ramón Urías and Jorge Mateo went a combined 5-for-8 with a double, homer, four runs scored and three RBIs. Mateo's speed was again a huge factor for the Orioles, who look to win the series this afternoon at Camden Yards. 




Orioles lineup vs. Yankees
Could Orioles' bullpen entice a division rival?

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