Baltimore Orioles: Five Prospects Facing Key Seasons In 2019
If Matthias Dietz can find his command, the Baltimore Orioles might have something.
Matthias Dietz has done exactly what you want your prospects to do in the minor leagues, show improvements each and every year. The stat line hasn’t shown it, but when you are at the ballpark watching him, you see it. Armed with a powerful fastball that reaches into the upper-90s with ease, Dietz was considered the top JUCO arm in the 2016 draft when the Orioles used a second round pick to select the right-handed pitcher. Since then, he has worked his way up to Advanced-A ball, but now needs to show he can put it all together on the mound.
After struggling with his command in his first two years with the Orioles, Dietz used his repeated time in full-season A ball with the Delmarva Shorebirds to show he could limit baserunners and miss bats with his four-pitch repertoire, increasing his strikeout rate by nearly 8%, compared to his 2017 campaign in Delmarva.
Unfortunately, things fell apart with his promotion to High-A. Dietz made 11 appearances, going 1-6 with a 7.98 ERA and 2.06 WHIP, walking 39 and striking out just 27 in 38 innings. He gave up four or more runs in five of his nine starts with Frederick, making it out of the 4th inning in just two of those starts.
Don’t let the high ERA and walks scare you off, yet. There is plenty of valuable potential here with Dietz, if he can find his command, ASAP. As with the final name on our list, featured on the next slide, a move to the bullpen could be a positive step with Dietz. His fastball/slider combo may be quite the weapon out of the pen for the Birds.