Seedlings to Stars, the Minor League Site for FanSided, has started a new feature called Harvesting Opinion. It is a regular feature on Seedlings to Stars which will appear every Monday. Each week, six of FanSided’s team blogs send S2S a question relating to their team’s minor league system, and they answer them in this space–each question gets one article devoted to answering it. In this way, we make sure we regularly get to discuss hot-button issues relating to the systems of every team, as these go on a five-week cycle.
The first week, BirdsWatcher was one of the 6 blogs to send in a question.
Here’s my question: J.J. Hardy has recently been signed to a 3-year deal with the Orioles. The O’s top prospect is SS Manny Machado so what exactly does that mean for him? The general idea is for Hardy to be here for 3 years and then Machado comes up to play in the majors. Will he be ready by then and what happens if he’s not? Also, do the O’s have any decent prospects at 2B? Do you think they could re-sign and move Hardy over to 2nd 3 years from now when Machado comes up to take over at SS?
Two of the writers over at Seedlings to Stars responded to the question. You can find both of their answers here.
I just wanted to take the time to respond to what they said a little bit. Both say that Machado probably won’t take 3 years to reach the big leagues. This would work out great for the Orioles because in that case, they could call him up and ease him into playing SS in the majors. He would share starting time with Hardy so that he doesn’t get over-played and has time to develop even more. However, there’s an even better scenario. Both men also discuss how Manny has the same big frame of A-Rod and that he could very likely out-grow the SS position. If this were to happen, he could get moved over to 3rd, have Hardy stay at 2nd and then move Reynolds to DH. That way, we still get Reynolds’ great power but don’t have to deal with his horrible defensive skills at third.
What a great infield: Chris Davis at 1st, Hardy at SS, and Machado at 3rd. As for the 2nd base position question I asked, it seems as if the O’s don’t exactly have large pickings for that position in the minors. We’ve seen both Ryan Adams and Blake Davis play at 2nd this season with the B-Rob injury, but they haven’t exactly shined on the big stage. With that said, I agree with Nathaniel that the O’s may take the draft route to garner a high 2nd basemen prospect who could be ready in a few short years.
Be sure to go check out their full answers with the link and stay tuned in the next few weeks for the next question about the Orioles minor leagues!