Because the 2022 season ended, Orioles government vice chairman and normal supervisor Mike Elias declared that the workforce was “formally within the struggle within the American League East.” Elias reiterated that sentiment Friday on 105.7 The Fan, including that “the purpose is to make the playoffs this yr.”
The query, although, is that if the roster he’s constructed is ready to stack up in opposition to the opposite AL East golf equipment throughout a 162-game season. There gained’t be a definitive reply for not less than a number of months, however a have a look at the Orioles’ present 40-man roster exhibits that versatility might be a cornerstone of the workforce.
The roster — with a number of pitchers who’ve expertise as each starters and relievers, infielders who can play a number of spots and catchers who might be requested to play first base — provides the workforce loads of maneuverability. However that very same pliability may additionally create some difficult selections for the membership in late March when the main league roster should be set.
After all, the offseason isn’t over but. With spring coaching about three weeks away, Elias nonetheless has time to make adjustments to the 40-man roster — and doubtlessly increase the workforce’s projected payroll, which ranks twenty ninth in line with Cot’s Baseball Contracts. He stated Friday that he’s nonetheless in search of methods so as to add to the roster by free company and trades.
Nonetheless, vital alterations to the 40-man roster at this stage within the offseason are unlikely, except Elias is ready to strike a deal on the commerce market. The free agent market has largely been pillaged, as every of the highest 32 gamers on MLB Commerce Rumors’ offseason rankings have discovered a house.
Because it stands now, the 40-man roster is one with a number of present or former prime prospects, a couple of seasoned veterans and loads of flexibility.
Mike Baumann, Kyle Bradish, Kyle Gibson, DL Corridor, Seth Johnson, Dean Kremer, John Means, Grayson Rodriguez, Drew Rom, Austin Voth, Spenser Watkins, Tyler Wells, Bruce Zimmermann
This group may give the membership the power all through the season to each handle workloads and supply depth within the bullpen. Elias stated the innings limits on Rodriguez, Corridor and Means — the latter of whom is recovering from Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgical procedure and is predicted again round midseason — is not going to be “laborious and quick.” However, Rodriguez and Corridor have by no means thrown greater than 103 innings in a season, whereas Means threw simply eight innings final yr earlier than being shut down.
Gibson, a 10-year veteran, is probably the most senior member of the rotation and the highest-paid participant on the workforce. The $10 million deal for Gibson, who posted a 5.05 ERA with the Philadelphia Phillies final season however had higher underlying metrics, is the biggest assure Elias has handed out throughout his 5 offseasons as normal supervisor.
Corridor, Voth, Watkins and Baumann all have various ranges of expertise popping out of the bullpen, and a few them might be lengthy reduction choices.
Keegan Akin, Bryan Baker, Félix Bautista, Yennier Canó, Noah Denoyer, Logan Gillaspie, Mychal Givens, Darwinzon Hernandez, Joey Krehbiel, Cionel Pérez, Andrew Politi, Dillon Tate, Nick Vespi
With a number of spots basically etched in stone (Bautista, Tate, Givens and Pérez amongst them), the ultimate couple seats within the bullpen might be one of many greatest questions all through spring coaching. Add in a pair beginning pitchers — notably Corridor and Voth — who might be moved to reduction, and the pool will get much more crowded.
Along with signing Givens to a $5 million contract, the Orioles additionally acquired Hernandez, a left-hander, in a commerce with the Boston Crimson Sox and chosen Politi, a right-hander, within the Rule 5 draft. Hernandez struggled in his seven reduction appearances final season (21.60 ERA), whereas Politi struck out 83 batters in 69 1/3 innings between Double-A and Triple-A. If the Orioles wish to hold Politi, he should be on the main league roster all yr.
James McCann, Adley Rutschman
In contrast to the pitchers they’ll be catching, the Orioles’ backstops are set in stone. Rutschman, the AL Rookie of the 12 months runner-up in 2022, provides the workforce one of many few star catchers within the majors, whereas McCann is a veteran who will again up the 24-year-old former No. 1 prospect. After his call-up in Could, the Orioles have been 50-34 final season with Rutschman — whose 5.3 wins above alternative ranked second amongst MLB catchers, in line with FanGraphs — behind the plate.
McCann, who the Orioles acquired in a commerce with the New York Mets, and Rutschman may additionally see time at first base on Ryan Mountcastle’s days off. McCann has performed 9 video games at first base in his nine-year profession; Rutschman began 30 of his 180 minor league video games at first.
Adam Frazier, Gunnar Henderson, Jorge Mateo, Ryan Mountcastle, Joey Ortiz, Ramón Urías, Terrin Vavra
The best way supervisor Brandon Hyde shuffles his infielders might be one thing to trace all season, as Henderson, Mateo, Ortiz and Urías all have the talent or expertise to play a number of infield positions. Frazier, who Baltimore signed to an $8 million contract this offseason, and Vavra even have outfield expertise.
Whereas McCann and Rutschman might be tasked with backing up Mountcastle at first base, the workforce has accrued left-handed hitting first basemen Ryan O’Hearn, Franchy Cordero and Lewin Díaz as potential choices. Not one of the three are at the moment on the 40-man roster, with Díaz clearing waivers and being outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk final week to lastly finish his carousel that noticed him designated for task 5 occasions in two months.
Austin Hays, Ryan McKenna, Cedric Mullins, Anthony Santander, Kyle Stowers
In contrast to the infield group, there isn’t as a lot to ponder with the Orioles’ outfielders. Mullins, coming off a Gold Glove finalist marketing campaign, is locked in heart discipline with Hays doubtless in left and Santander in proper.
Santander is coming off a bounce-back season with 33 house runs, and Hays had an up-and-down 2022 with a very good first half and a foul second half. Stowers figures to be the fourth outfielder and a chosen hitter candidate, whereas McKenna would nonetheless function the workforce’s pinch-runner and defensive specialist.