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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Where the Orioles’ minors maybe aren’t great

In one writer’s estimation, the Orioles have the worst farm system in baseball. So...that’s not ideal.

MLB: Spring Training-St. Louis Cardinals at Baltimore Orioles Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

OK, look. The Orioles are going to be terrible this season. They’ll probably have the worst record in baseball. I know it. You know it. And the Orioles certainly know it. But at least help is on the way in the minor league system, right?

Well...maybe not. As Mark Brown discussed yesterday, the Orioles ranked dead last in Keith Law’s 2019 farm system rankings on ESPN. Ouch.

That is, of course, just one man’s opinion, although Law is one of the go-to pundits for prospect evaluation. He’s not just throwing darts here. And even if you think he’s being an overly harsh grader, most minor league experts agree that the Orioles’ overall system ranks somewhere in the bottom third of the league. The O’s have several intriguing prospects who could develop into solid players, but few if any are projected to be future stars.

So as the Orioles’ prospects make their way to the majors, don’t expect them to immediately turn the team into a contender. Mike Elias and his staff have a lot more work to do to replenish the Birds’ talent, up and down the system. If nothing else, the organization should get a nice shot in the arm in June, when the Orioles hold the first overall pick in the amateur draft (and the first pick in every round thereafter).

It’s going to be a long process. But that’s what we signed up for, isn’t it?


Baltimore Orioles: Top Ten Prospects Heading Into 2019 - Birds Watcher
Speaking of Orioles prospects, Birds Watcher chimes in with their staff’s top 10. Can’t argue much with these, and the usual names — DL Hall, Ryan Mountcastle, and Yusniel Diaz — make up the top three. (Oh, uh...spoiler alert.)

Hyde: “I know our players are unbelievably energized” - School of Roch
It’s easy to be energized when the season starts. The trick will be staying energized in August when the club is careening toward another 100-loss season. Hyde, at least, seems up to the challenge.

Pre-spring training edition: 10 questions for O’s fans - Steve Melewski
Sisco, Mullins, Stewart, under, waaaaaaay under, under, Phillies?, Cobb, Givens, Martin. What say you?

Is this finally the year for Orioles’ Hunter Harvey? -
Hunter Harvey says he’s healthy. Of course, he’s said that before, and it’s always been immediately followed by a devastating injury. But hey, maybe this time it’ll actually hold true. The O’s could use some good luck.

Orioles birthdays

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! You share your day with four ex-Orioles, including Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar (51), who had three sensational years in Baltimore from 1996-98. Alomar won two of his 10 career Gold Gloves and made three of his 12 career All-Star appearances with the Orioles, batting .312/.382/.480 with 50 homers and 210 RBIs in that three-year stretch, which included two postseason appearances. Alomar has to be considered one of the best free-agent signings in Orioles history.

Other ex-Orioles with birthdays today are one-year relievers Ryan Webb (33) and Chris Brock (49) as well as Chuck Diering, a utility guy on the inaugural Orioles from 1954-56. Diering, who died in 2012 at age 89, would have been 96 today.

And last but not least, today is the birthday of the best person I know, my awesome wife and the queen of Camden Chat, Stacey. There’s nobody I would rather spend my time with — especially when we’re commiserating over the Orioles together. And did I mention she’s a fantastic mother? As I write this, she’s doing a little song and dance routine to encourage our 18-month-old to eat her food. Happy birthday, Stacey!