The Baltimore Orioles will send just one representative to the All-Star game, it will be a pitcher, and it will be an opener.
Every team gets to send a representative to the All-Star game, so no matter how bad things get, one player is sure to make their way to Progressive Field in Cleveland for the Mid-Summer Classic. One of the “most anonymous team in MLB history” according to FiveThirtyEight, it’s hard to see any position player earning enough votes.
How about a starting pitcher? Nope. That leaves a bullpen arm as the one Baltimore representative at the 2019 All-Star game.
Bold prediction number four- that arm is Jimmy Yacabonis. Jon Meoli of The Baltimore Sun recently called Yacabonis “one of the best raw arms in the system.” We have seen what he is capable of at the major league level, when he is left alone and allowed to pitch without constantly traveling between Baltimore and Norfolk. Just look at his 2.61 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, and .205 average against him through 20.2 September innings.
If the Orioles keep Yacabonis as an opener or reliever and allow him to go max effort in shorter stints, he can be a dangerous weapon out of the bullpen. He isn’t a starting pitcher, no matter how much the previous regime wanted him to be. With a fastball like the one seen above and his slider that produced a .170 batting average and 36% whiff rate last season, it’s not far-fetched to believe that Yacabonis becomes the top reliever on the roster and gets an All-Star nod.