Baltimore Orioles: There’s a surprising amount of optimism in Birdland
We’re a week removed from the Baltimore Orioles hiring Brandon Hyde as the 20th manager in franchise history, and things are still looking up in Birdland
If you’d have asked us in September, we never would’ve guessed we’d be so optimistic at this point in the Baltimore Orioles offseason, but here we are on December 21st, praising the moves the O’s have made thus far.
Given how Peter Angelos had operated in the past, we weren’t sure that whoever was hired as the next head of baseball operations would be the right choice for the Orioles, nor did we think whoever that was would have autonomy in the position – enter Mike Elias.
A month has passed since the Elias hire, and it hasn’t felt for a minute like there’s been any interference from the ownership group in baseball operations affairs. We know that John and Louis Angelos aren’t their father, but we’d grown accustomed to the way Peter Angelos handled his business, and we know that it wasn’t always for the best.
More from Birds Watcher
- Baltimore Orioles Sign RP Mychal Givens
- Gunnar Henderson: Destroyer of Four-Seam Fastballs
- Which Current Baltimore Orioles Pitchers Have the Best Curveballs?
- Orioles News: Should the O’s Pursue Eovaldi? + More MLB News
- Should the Baltimore Orioles Consider Signing Nathan Eovaldi?
Unlike Dan Duquette during his entire tenure, Elias has had complete autonomy thus far, using it to clean out the Orioles front office, including letting go of scouting director Gary Rajsich and director of player development Brian Graham, and just last week bringing in the Orioles newest manager Brandon Hyde.
Elias has previously stated that he’ll be a part of the interview process as the Orioles fill out their major league coaching staff, but he’ll rely mainly on Hyde to bring in the right guys for the job. Who those guys will be is to be determined, hopefully in the near future, but Hyde has expressed a preference for “player development guys”.
This makes sense given Hyde’s background, as he’s seen first-hand how important player development is in building a consistently competitive organization. We’ll see soon enough who Hyde has in mind for the open positions.
Hyde likely won’t be able to poach his people from the Cubs system, but having spent the last sixteen years coaching for the Cubs and Marlins, Hyde’s contact list is bound to be quite large. He’ll be able to build a candidate list and work his way through the interview process over the next couple weeks.
Considering how deep we are into the baseball offseason, Hyde might have trouble interviewing some of his ideal candidates; they’re more than likely employed. But he’ll have a few options already in the Orioles organization if need be; Roch Kubatko goes in-depth on them here.
Elias and Hyde undoubtedly have their work cut out for them over the next two months. They still need to fill out the entire major league coaching staff, and there’s likely another move or two to be made at the major league level; the Orioles could still benefit from a veteran catcher and outfielder, and the pitching staff needs work.
But from 20,000 feet, this offseason has been a success so far. The Orioles were the last team to hire a head of baseball operations, and were the last to hire a manager. But it feels like they’ve made great choices; they just need to keep making them.