Baltimore Orioles Pitchers Faring Well In Winter Ball
A few Baltimore Orioles minor league relievers have been pitching well in the Dominican this winter.
Happy Holidays, Baltimore Orioles fans! Did you put any Orioles gear on your wish list this season? I’m going to be honest, I didn’t. Thinking about the 2020 Orioles kind of kills the holiday spirit. But I digress.
With winter leagues set to wrap up in the coming weeks, let’s check in on how a few Orioles players have fared this winter in the Dominican Winter League. There aren’t very many in the organization who made a trip down south or chose the more adventurous trip to Australia this winter, but the Orioles do have a few pitchers who are performing well in the Dominican.
One name who has some impressive numbers is the newest member of the Orioles, RHP Marcos Diplan. Diplan was the lone addition from the winter meetings, a waiver claim from the Detroit Tigers.
Pitching for Aguilas Cibaenas, Diplan has tossed 9.2 scoreless innings, giving up four hits and five walks along the way, including eight strikeouts. He’s allowed just one hit over his last five innings of work.
Diplan is on the 40-man roster and figures to be in the mix for a bullpen spot in spring training, if he can cut down on his walks, something that has plagued him throughout his career.
Speaking of walks, 24-year-old RHP Diogenes Almengo issued his fair share of free passes last season with the Frederick Keys, walking 40 in 55 innings, but he did strike out 66 and hold opponents to a .212 average in High-A ball. He figures to play a prominent role with the Bowie Baysox next season.
With the Leones del Escogido of the Dominican Winter League, Almengo has recorded an 0-1 record and a 3.14 ERA across 12 outings, striking out 12 and walking just four in 14.1 innings of work.
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Finally, there’s Francisco Jimenez. The 25-year-old pitched very well in High-A and Double-A last season, before struggling in Triple-A with the Norfolk Tides. He allowed just 19 earned runs across 72 innings with the Keys and Baysox, striking out 65 and limited his walks to 21 along the way.
With the Toros del Este, Jimenez has allowed five earned runs in 8.1 innings of work, with four of those runs coming in two outings. Four of his 10 outings have been scoreless outings of at least 1.1 innings. He’s allowed only two walks and has yet to allow a home run while striking out seven.
The names aren’t extremely exciting, but it’s all the baseball we have at the moment and it’s nice to see these guys pitching well over the winter.
We can’t forget about our old friend, Ubaldo Jimenez. Jimenez is currently pitching for the Tigres del Licey and owns a 1-4 record and a 3.03 ERA in eight starts. He has a 27/13 K/BB ratio and no home runs allowed through 29.2 innings of work, but has struggled a bit in his last three starts after firing back-to-back five-inning starts where he allowed zero earned runs and just five total hits.