After a look at the current infield depth chart Tuesday, we move on to the Orioles outfield today, where they have five players on their 40-man roster and a few other candidates for opening day roster spots.
The starters as of this writing seem to be the same three that made most of the starts last year. Austin Hays, who made 82 starts in left field, Cedric Mullins back in center after 140 starts there in 2022 and Anthony Santander in right field where he started 79 times. Hays actually made 51 right field starts while Santander made 34 as the DH.
Hays made his third straight opening day roster, hit for the sixth cycle in club history in June and set career highs for games, extra-base hits and at-bats. His 35 doubles tied Adley Rutschman for the team lead. But his falloff at bat in the second half had some fans concerned. His OPS was .843 in April and .798 in May and he led the club in offensive WAR at that point. But his second-half OPS was .626.
Mullins had the difficult chore of trying to follow up his 30-30 season. While his stolen base total increased to 34 (second in the AL to Jorge Mateo), his homer total dropped to 16. His OPS dropped from .878 (OPS+ of 137) to .721 (OPS+ of .104). No doubt the Orioles are hopeful they get more offensive production out of both of these players in 2023.
Santander had a big year and ranked tied for fifth in the AL in homers. He batted .240/.318/.455/.773 with 33 homers and 89 RBIs. He produced career highs in games, at-bats, hits, home runs, extra-base hits, total bases, runs scored, RBIs, walks, hit-by-pitches, and OBP and tied a career high in doubles. He led the club in homers, extra-base hits, total bases, RBI, hit-by-pitches, and slugging. And Santander’s 33 homers as a switch-hitter were the most in MLB last year and the most by an O's switch-hitter since Eddie Murray hit 33 in 1983.