Amazing stat shows just how much Adley Rutschman turned the Orioles franchise around

The Orioles somehow got everything they could have hoped for and more when they drafted Adley Rutschman.
Arizona Diamondbacks v Baltimore Orioles
Arizona Diamondbacks v Baltimore Orioles / G Fiume/GettyImages

Whenever any team, including the Baltimore Orioles, have the first overall pick in the MLB Draft, the hope is that they can pick someone that can change the course of the franchise. In a lot of cases, that has happened with Ken Griffey Jr., Chipper Jones, Bryce Harper, and Joe Mauer all being great examples of exactly that happening. So, when the Orioles picked Adley Rutschman first overall back in 2019, expectations were extremely high.

Rutschman was easily the top draft prospect in that draft class, but success was never a given. For every Griffey or Harper, there are plenty of examples of guys like Mickey Moniak, Tim Beckham, Delmon Young, and Ben McDonald that never amount to much of anything.

Thankfully, it looks like Baltimore did indeed nail their pick in Rutschman as he finished second in the AL Rookie of the Year race in 2022 and was an All-Star last year. The career .273/.364/.446 line, in addition to being one of the best catchers in baseball, is good enough, but the Orioles' numbers since he got called up to the big leagues tell an even better story.

Adley Rutschman was the start of something special for the Orioles

To be clear, this isn't a situation where Rutschman appeared from the minor leagues and put a bad team on his back and carried them to victory. Getting the Orioles to where they are now has required a team effort featuring guys like Gunnar Henderson, Anthony Santander, Grayson Rodriguez, Colton Cowser, and many others. Baseball is the ultimate team sport and Rutschman would be the first to say that he is just one part of a great team.

Still, it is hard not to draw some parallels to what drafting Buster Posey did for the Giants. Posey was "only" the fifth overall pick, but having him behind the plate as a true team leader and MVP winner turned San Francisco into a juggernaut that won three World Series titles in the 2010s. When he becomes eligible, he is a mortal lock to make the Hall of Fame.

Rutschman has a long way to go to measure up to a guy like Posey, or even the recently inducted, and fellow first overall pick, Joe Mauer. However, there is no denying how big of an impact Rutschman has had and how important he is to this Orioles club. The crazy thing is that he is so talented, the best is probably yet to come.

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