We're winding down with the month of April. So far, the Baltimore Orioles are out to a good start with a winning record in a tightly contested AL East. However, improvements can still be made for a team with playoff aspirations. I decided to do a series called three studs and three duds, for both the lineup and the pitching staff.
We'll do the lineup today and move to the pitching side next. We'll start with the studs before moving on to the duds.
Baltimore Orioles three studs and three duds
Stud: Jorge Mateo, SS
Jorge Mateo has been nothing short of incredible to start the season for the Orioles. Entering play on Friday, he's got a .362 batting average with a .418 on base percentage and .638 slugging percentage, hitting three home runs with 12 RBIs, swiping eight bases in 16 games of action. His bWAR is 1.2 already.
As for the advanced stats, he's ranking well on those too. Entering play on Friday, he ranks in the 83rd percentile in average exit velocity, 72nd percentile in hard hit percentage, 91st percentile in max exit velocity, and the 99th percentile in sprint speed, to name just a few. Simply put, Mateo has been everything the Orioles have needed this season.
Stud: Adley Rutschman, C
While not quite at the same level as Mateo, Adley Rutschman has also enjoyed a strong start to the sesaon. Rutschman has a .309 batting average, .447 on base percentage, and .515 slugging percentage through 18 games, adding four home runs and 14 RBIs, giving him a 0.7 bWAR.
Rutschman also has plenty of strong analytics. He ranks in the 97th percentile of walk rate, his best ranking on baseball savant. He also has a 90th percentile rank in chase rate, 89th percentile ranking in whiff percentage, and 84th percentile in strikeout percentage. He's vital to the Orioles success.
Stud: Adam Frazier, 2B/OF
The third most valuable player on the Orioles by bWAR is Frazier, the veteran utility player signed to a one year deal over the offseason. He's off to a bit of a tempered start with the bat, having a .245 batting average and .759 OPS to go with two long balls and seven RBIs in 18 games.
Frazier's best advanced stats come in the form of a 95th percentile ranking in both strikeout percentage and whiff percentage. His walk percentage is in the 79th percentile, while his expected batting average is in the 77th percentile.
Now, let's see who the duds are.