Another impressive win for the Orioles! They won there first 1-0 game in over two years. Rich Hill looked great on the mound tonight. The first three innings were a little shaky but he pulled himself together. He has looked good in three out of his four starts. Right now he looks like the pitcher everyone remembers from 2007 and not the lost one of 2008. He has made Andy McPhail look shrewd and balanced out the Felix Pie trade.
The Erik Bedard trade is the trade that keeps on giving. McPhail’s fleecing of the Mariners continues to pay huge dividends. He acquired Adam Jones, our everyday center fielder and Perennial All Star in waiting. Jones hit a double in the sixth and scored the games only run on a sacrifice fly from Aubrey Huff. Our current closer, George Sherrill was the closer insurance in the trade. He came in to record his 11th save last night. He should be dealt this year and could bring more prospects to build with.
We still have three pitchers down on the farm thanks to the trade. Chris Tillman is our #1 pitching prospect. He is dominating at AAA with 5 wins and a 2.13 ERA. He will probably be a September call up. He is a good bet to join the rotation in 2010. Kam Mickolio is struggling at AAA. He has an OK arm and may turn in to a contributor out of the bullpen. Tony Butler was supposed to be the other “Big” arm of the trade. He has been hurt and hasn’t pitched.
As well as everyone has pitched, part of the credit needs to go to the catchers. Matt Wieters was supposed to be ready at the plate and still developing behind it. He has been outstanding calling the games while struggling offensively. No need to worry, his hits will come! Greg Zaun called a great game on Sunday for Jason Berken. With all of the rookies pitching so well what will the O’s do with Koji when he is healthy? He has been a reliever in Japan the past couple of years and could easily return to the pen.
Nolan Reimold has come up and taken control of right field job. Surprisingly, his 5 Home Runs put’s him amongst the Rookie Home Run leaders. He is finally healthy and his explosion this year was unexpected. The outfield is shaping up nicely for the next 6 years.
Everyone in Baltimore should be thankful we have Andy McPhail running our franchise. He seems to have calmed Sweet Pete down and taken control of the team. The top 3 players he received in return for Eric Bedard have been AMAZING. The trade was so lopsided it helped get Bill Bavasi fired. Rich Hill could be a steal from the Cubs. I don’t know who will be the next Oriole traded but it should be interesting to see how much we can get for them. I wonder how many teams won’t want to trade with us because of McPhail’s success since coming to Baltimore.