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Twelve Orioles thoughts on Adley Rutschman’s Baltimore introduction

Posted on 25 June 2019 by Luke Jones

With Orioles first overall pick Adley Rutschman being introduced in Baltimore after signing a record-breaking $8.1 million bonus Monday, I’ve offered a dozen thoughts, each in 50 words or less:

1. In a season with very little to look forward to, fans attending Tuesday’s game were treated to a look at the new face of the Orioles rebuild. The standing ovation Rutschman received was energetic and one of hope from a fan base needing much more to cheer about these days.

2. Rutschman being introduced on the same day Manny Machado returned to Camden Yards was fitting. The Orioles also owned the majors’ worst record when Machado was selected third overall June 7, 2010. Twenty-six months later, he debuted on a playoff-qualifying team. Fans can dream.

3. Mike Elias said Rutschman will soon report to Sarasota and spend a brief time with the Gulf Coast Orioles before going to short-season Single-A Aberdeen later this summer. If he excels for the IronBirds, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a late-season promotion to Delmarva for the postseason.

4. Rutschman will see time at first base and as a designated hitter in addition to catching duties this season. The organization is very comfortable with his work behind the plate, so there’s no sense overworking him there if the greater focus in 2019 is getting him professional at-bats.

5. The 21-year-old was very businesslike during his introductory press conference, but you couldn’t miss the big smile on his face when he was asked about his makeup as a catcher. He relishes the opportunity to impact so many parts of the game behind the plate.

6. Rutschman admitted the Oregon State pitching coach called most pitches — very typical in college baseball — but he offered more input as he gained experience and did call his own pitches in the Cape Cod League and playing for Team USA. This will be an important part of his development.

7. Swinging from the left side, Rutschman put on a show during batting practice with the current Orioles before Tuesday’s game. In roughly 10 swings, I saw him hit a ball onto Eutaw Street, another over the center-field fence, and a third off the right-center wall. Not too bad.

8. There’s no truth to the rumor that Brandon Hyde lobbied to add him to Tuesday’s lineup, but Rutschman looked the part in a setting where all eyes were on him. Of course, he’s dealt with the spotlight for a couple years playing in a high-profile program with scouts always watching.

9. Orioles scout Brandon Verley was glowing in his assessment of the player he began tracking at the high school level and has seen Rutschman swing a wooden bat multiple times with no concerns. “You give him a toothpick, and he’d figure out how to hit.” That’s a pretty good line.

10. Rutschman mentioned Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina as major leaguers he admired growing up. That had to please Elias, who is very familiar with both as a former St. Louis Cardinals scout and witnessed firsthand the impact Molina has brought as their longtime catcher.

11. Watching Rutschman interact with the likes of Keon Broxton and Dwight Smith Jr. in his hitting group, I couldn’t help but wonder how many current players will be around when the young catcher is promoted to the majors. The Orioles will try to take their time with him, of course.

12. I’m always reminded how special a day like Tuesday is for the many Orioles and Ravens draft picks I’ve covered over the years. Most attention falls on their playing potential and the business side, but witnessing an entire family’s joy on such a life-changing day never gets old.

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Bundy allows first pro earned runs but wins Frederick debut

Posted on 27 May 2012 by WNST Staff

FREDERICK, MD – In front of an over-capacity crowd of 9,833 fans at Harry Grove Stadium, the Keys won 5-3 over the Salem Red Sox in Dylan Bundy’s highly anticipated debut with the Frederick Keys.

Dylan Bundy earned the win after going five innings and allowing two runs on six hits and also collecting six strikeouts and no walks.

The 19-year old, who had a 0.00 ERA in Delmarva through 30 innings, gave up the first earned runs of his professional career when Travis Shaw of Salem hit a two-run homerun over the right-center field wall.

Yet that was his lone blemish as he held the league’s best hitting team to two earned runs through five innings of work.

The performance from Bundy helps pushes the Keys to 17-27 on the year while Salem slips to 26-19.

After the Keys took a 1-0 lead in the second on a sacrifice fly from Michael Mosby, that’s when Salem struck with Shaw’s two-run homerun off of Bundy to take a 2-1 lead.

It wouldn’t last long as Kipp Schutz connected on a pitch in the very next inning for a solo homerun – his first of the year – to tie the score at two.

Later in the inning, after Bobby Stevens singled and Michael Rooney drew a big two-out walk, Trent Mummey hit a two-RBI double to give the Keys the lead right back at 4-2.

Getting an insurance run from a Jeremy Nowak single to make it 5-2 in the seventh, the Keys’ bullpen held strong, allowing just one run in a combined four innings of work.

The Keys will try and win the rubber match against Salem tomorrow at 6 PM for Girls Night Out when RHP Kyle Simon (1-6, 4.40 ERA) goes against RHP Miguel Celestino (2-1, 3.46 ERA).

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Roberts working on “getting his clock back” in early stages of rehab assignment

Posted on 26 May 2012 by Luke Jones

BALTIMORE — Three games into his minor rehab assignment, Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts thankfully hasn’t suffered any setbacks.

However, after a yearlong layoff from playing in real games, Roberts is still re-adjusting to the speed of the game at the minor-league level. In case anyone was wondering, that’s to be expected, according to manager Buck Showalter.

“He’s starting to get his clock back,” Showalter said. “If this thing, the way that he’s got it drawn it up and we have, he’d have the equivalent of spring training under his belt — at-bats-wise. He’d be in the mid-50s [for] plate appearances. He’s doing probably more work before the game [so far].”

Roberts has played second base and received six plate appearances in his first three games at Double-A Bowie before receiving the day off on Saturday. The 34-year-old has yet to collect a hit but has walked twice and drove in a run with a sacrifice fly on Friday night.

The plan is for Roberts to receive three plate appearances in Bowie on Sunday and Monday before heading to Single-A Delmarva on Tuesday and Wednesday, where he is expected to receive four plate appearances per game.

Beyond that, Showalter wants to discuss the remainder of the 20-day rehab assignment — ending on June 11 — with Roberts and expressed a desire for the veteran to finish the stint with games at Triple-A Norfolk.

Before going on his rehab assignment, Roberts acknowledged to reporters he’s thought about changes he might have to make in his style of play, particularly sliding feet-first instead of the headfirst slides that were a trademark of his career prior to the concussion-related issues. Showalter plans to discuss this with Roberts after he has stacked some more plate appearances, but he doesn’t envision a dramatically-different approach for the middle infielder and leadoff hitter.

“I’ll kind of believe that when I see it,” Showalter said. “I think he’s going to play the game with some energy. That’s the one thing — the couple games I saw — his clock isn’t quite there.”

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High-A Frederick next test for Orioles prospect Bundy

Posted on 23 May 2012 by WNST Staff

It was only a matter of time until 2011 Orioles first-round pick Dylan Bundy found himself moving up the levels of Baltimore’s minor league sytem with the success and dominance he has been having.

Dylan Bundy

The Orioles announced Wednesday that Bundy would be moving up from the Delmarva Shoebirds to the Frederick Keys, the “high-A” class of the Orioles’ minor leagues.

He will make his first start for Frederick Saturday against Salem, the Keys announced.

In 30 innings of work for Delmarva, Bundy-the fourth overall pick out of Owasso High School-registered 40 strikeouts while only allowing five hits, two walks, and two unearned runs.

If Bundy’s success were to continue, he could find himself moving up another level to the Orioles’ Double-A affiliate in Bowie, or maybe a major league call-up in September.

 

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Orioles prospect Bundy off to hot start in Delmarva

Posted on 09 May 2012 by WNST Audio

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