The Baltimore Orioles' affiliates started their 2023 seasons last week, with a lot of action from the best prospects in Baltimore's top ranked farm system.
Norfolk Tides (AAA)
Series vs Gwinnett Stripers (Tides wins, 4-1)
What a week by Norfolk. The AAA affiliate crushed the ball with five dingers, two triples, seven doubles across 45 total hits! The newly top 100 prospect, Connor Norby, had eight hits and he had at least one hit per game since the second matchup against Durham. Another curiosity was Jordan Westburg playing left field. Versatility is great in the minors. Maybe Baltimore put him in the outfield sometimes at the major league level...
From pitching side, DL Hall started two games on 7.2 IP. He had 12 strikeouts and allowed eight hits, four walks, four earned runs and a Home Run (.258 BAA). A few more starts to the lefty on Tides and we'll be back to Baltimore. Ryan Watson, the 2022 Jim Palmer award winner, debuted with a solid outing (5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 4 BB, 3 K).
Next series: at Nashville Sounds
Bowie Baysox (AA)
Series at Hartford Yard Goats (Baysox wins 2-1)
Almost a perfect weekend. Bowie debuted with Heston Kjerstad playing first base. The experience came to fruition with a Home Run by the 2020 second overall pick. Coby Mayo and John Rhodes also hit dingers. Cuban infielder César Prieto lead Bowie in hits (6) and batting average (.429).
On the mound, Chayce McDermott played brilliant from bullpen (4.0 IP, 2 BB, 6 K, SV). Justin Armbruester was great, too (5.0 IP, 5 H, BB, 4 K). Cade Povich had a shaky outing (3.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 K). Honorable mention to Peter Van Loon with a 99 mph heater!
Next series: vs Akron RubberDucks
Aberdeen IronBirds (High-A)
Series vs Wilmington Blue Rocks (Birds wins 2-1)
Like Baltimore, Aberdeen pushed his Opening Day to avoid rainout. From there, a great outing by the pitching staff, especially Trace Bright. The 2022 draftee had 10 strikeouts in 3.2 IP! He had 3 runs allowed, but none earned. The Opening Day starter, Jean Pinto, finished his day with 6 K's over 4.1 IP. Daniel Federman, from relief, had 8 punchouts across 4 IP.
From batting side, only Jud Fabian hits over the fence. The IronBirds legend, James McCann, played two games and leads the team with 4 hits. Jokes aside, Fabian, Frederick Bencosme and Dylan Beavers had three hits each.
Next series: at Hudson Valley Renegades
Delmarva Shorebirds (Low-A)
Series at Salem Red Sox (Birds wins 2-1)
TWENTY-EIGHT RUNS! Almost nine runs per game! The offense showed up, courtesy by Samuel Basallo. If you don't have aboard on Basallo's hype train, check this: two Moonshots, five RBI and 1.047 OPS. Alongside him the other catcher, Creed Willems: 4-7, HR, 2 2B, 2.013 OPS! Jackson Holliday didn't hit a dinger, but he leads the team in hits (6), doubles (3), second in RBI (4) and batting average (.462). And ocassionally he flashes defense on second base.
On the mound, the best outing was by the tallest pitcher, Jared Beck (4.0 IP, H, 3 BB, 3 K). He was one of three pitchers who didn't allowed a run this series. The pitching staff will be better this week.
Next series: vs Kannapolis Cannon Ballers