Baltimore Orioles lucky to have Joey Rickard

Courtesy of Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Courtesy of Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports /

The Baltimore Orioles really lucked out on Rule 5 pick Joey Rickard.

There are few things in life that’s comparable to finding out that you’ve made an MLB team like Joey Rickard did with the Baltimore Orioles. All promotions are welcome in any industry, however all players know that it’s tough for Rule 5 players to make the team. Now with that said, if you’re drafted as a Rule 5 draftee by the Orioles, you have to know that you’ve got a great chance.

Needless to say, when you’re a prospect and you end up finding out you made the team, it’s quite a moment. And the fact is that in this case the Orioles have really lucked out. Rickard is exactly the type of player that

Courtesy of Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Courtesy of Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports /

they’ve needed. He gets on base, he hustles, he plays hard, and he seems willing to do whatever is necessary to succeed at this level. Mind you, this isn’t to say that other players aren’t just as able and just as willing to do what’s necessary to win, but Rickard’s goal doesn’t seem to be to hit home runs – it’s just to be in the lineup.

Not only did Rickard make the team, but he was the starting left fielder on Opening Day. How you go from being on the bubble to being a starter is beyond me. But the fact is that no matter how you look at it, Rickard’s done just that.

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SF Giants: The Arbitration Case for Joey Rickard /

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  • The only thing that Rickard knew was that it was going to be a strange feeling being a big leaguer on Opening Day, which is what he indicated prior to Monday’s game (quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports):

    "It’s hard to get ready for what I’m going to feel today as far as the fans and all that atmosphere, but as far as the stadium and the field, I feel like I’m pretty comfortable with the clubhouse. The way things went yesterday, I’m pretty confident."

    But make no mistake about the fact that it’s the Orioles who lucked out here. As I said, Rickard is precisely what this lineup needed. And quite frankly, he’s somewhat the type of player that we thought Kim would be. Granted, the guy’s played two games as a big leaguer – so let’s not crown him king just yet. But based on what we’ve seen in spring training and in two regular season games, the early returns are great for Joey Rickard.

    And the kicker is that they got him from a division rival in Tampa. I suspect that Rickard probably would have ended up in triple-A this year had the O’s not taken him in the Rule 5 draft. Regardless of what you think of Dan Duquette’s management of the roster and the players, he’s lucked out on the Rule 5 draft. And Rickard could well be his best selection yet.

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    My personal hope is that the Orioles are able to keep Rickard throughout the year so that he’ll continue as a member of the organization. Obviously if that happens, they would in theory be able to send him to the minors. But if the early returns are any indication, they may not have to.

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    Rickard’s reaction both on and off the field to being a big leaguer has been great. But as I’ve said, the Orioles are the ones who are lucky to have him at this point – not the other way around. Incidentally, there is a threat of rain for tonight’s game. We certainly don’t want anymore rain delays, but obviously the hope is that they get the game in.