3 players Orioles should seek to trade away after early struggles

Austin Hays swinging the bat at Camden Yards against the Brewers
Austin Hays swinging the bat at Camden Yards against the Brewers / G Fiume/GettyImages

The Orioles are off to a 12-6 start to the season, which is good enough for second place in the AL East and the third-best record in the major leagues. However, with all good starts come players who are still struggling, and the Orioles have not been able to avoid that reality. They have had plenty of prominent players who have started out hot, of course, but the sore spots cannot be ignored (especially with so many potential upgrades in the high minors).

This is a telling year for the Orioles to really see what they are made of, and whether they truly are going to be contenders long-term, so it is never too early to start looking at some of these early-struggling players and talk about whether or not they should be traded. After all, we already know Mike Elias is looking.

With players waiting in the wings in the minors right now, the Orioles need to start looking at a next-man-up approach and dump some of the players who just are not producing (and no, I don’t mean Jackson Holliday). They also need to start looking at bullpen depth, as that has been a mighty struggle early on, which is why these are three players the Orioles should consider trading (either now or at the trade deadline).

3 Baltimore Orioles players the team should consider trading at deadline (or sooner)

Ramón Urías

With the emergence of Jordan Westburg and the recent call-up of Holliday, Urías is the odd man out anyways. Add that to the fact that he has started the season batting .167 in a limited sample size, and he's not doing much to bolster his case as a now-utility player. He needs to produce more off the bench, and maybe he will get himself going, but as of right now, it might be best to trade him.

Urías still has some upside, and he will bring a veteran presence somewhere; that means decent trade value (especially with two full years of team control). Plus, if the Orioles trade Urías, that creates a roster spot for Coby Mayo, which gives another top prospect a chance to break through in the major leagues.

Cole Irvin

Down the backstretch of last season, when Irvin relieved, he looked pretty solid. As a starter in his career, however, Irvin has struggled. That has become evident early on again this season, but because moving him to the bullpen would entail needing to find another starter, trading Irvin and a prospect for a starter might be the best move.

Or just trade Irvin and call up Cade Povich. That works, too.

Austin Hays

It’s never easy to put a guy on the trade list who has been with the team for his entire career and is one year removed from making the All-Star team. Heck, Hays even had a three-hit game in the playoffs last year.

However, sometimes life is about making hard decisions, and keeping Hays in the everyday lineup for this O’s team could be holding them back. He had an up-and-down finish to last year after his first career All-Star appearance, and he has three hits in 41 at-bats this year. He could have an Anthony Rendon-like turnaround, but with guys like Heston Kjerstad raking in Triple-A right now, it makes sense to move on from Hays and get something in return for him. The move only gets more obvious when you realize he has one more year of team control left after the 2024 season.