Good morning, Birdland!
If you’re going to join the Austin Hays hype train, you had better hurry because it’s about to leave the station. The Orioles right fielder continued his hot spring with another home run on Tuesday night, his fourth of the pre-season. His batting line in the Grapefruit League is now full of beefy numbers: .355/.375/.871.
Will this be enough for the 23-year-old to make the O’s opening day roster? It’s tough to say. His service time clock is already ticking, so the club won’t benefit from sending him down to begin the regular season “just because.” However, there is a fairly valid argument to giving him some time in Bowie or Norfolk based off of his performance and injury troubles in 2018. It’s possible that he isn’t quite “ready” for a full-time role in Baltimore.
But that argument starts to look a little silly when you skim through the Orioles current 40-man roster. How many of these players are really MLB caliber anyway? Would they even be considered on most of the other 29 teams in the league? Hays is one of the team’s best outfielders, if not the best. If there is playing time to be had for him in Baltimore, then he should be given the innings. The previous regime thought he was good enough for the highest level back in 2017, when they were competing for a playoff berth. Then it would stand to reason he can handle a prominent role for a rebuilding squad.
These O’s need some excitement in the lineup, and Hays can certainly provide that.
How did Hays turn this into a home run? pic.twitter.com/gcGTFH2OZy— Nick Cicere (@Swissere) March 13, 2019
Links & Notes
The 2019 O’s Are One Of The Most Anonymous Teams In MLB History - FiveThirtyEight
So, you’re telling me that a lineup made up of Chance Sisco, Renato Núñez and Richie Martin will not make too many appearances on ESPN this season? That’s fair.
Mychal Givens struggles again as O’s fall to Yankees - MASN Sports
Mike Wright’s stock sunk a little in this game as he allowed his first runs of the spring. Even still, his chances of making the team remain pretty good. Mychal Givens is one of the few players in camp that is guaranteed an opening day roster spot, and he’s experienced enough that poor spring training stats aren’t too worrisome...yet.
Adam Jones eager for fresh start - Baltimore Sun/Associated Press
This does feel like it worked out as good as it could have for both Jones and the O’s. He gets to play regularly for team that should be competitive while also moving closer to his hometown. Meanwhile, the Orioles don’t have an awkward situation on their hands when they are ready to see all of the young outfielders up in the bigs.
Excited to announce that I’m joining The Baltimore Sun as an Orioles beat writer later this month.— Nathan Ruiz (@NathanSRuiz) March 12, 2019
The Big 12 Tournament will be my last assignment for The Oklahoman. I could not have asked for a better group of partners, editors and mentors to work alongside this past year.
Orioles birthdays and history
Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!
Will Clark is the only former Oriole celebrating his birthday. The now-55-year-old played in 156 games for two bad Orioles teams between 1999 and 2000. During that time, the first baseman slashed .302/.404/.477 with 19 home runs before being traded to the St. Louis Cardinals in exchange for infielder José León.
There are not any interesting Orioles-related notes on this date in Baseball Reference’s log of baseball history. On the bright side, the Birds are back on the field later today. Mark Trumbo is expected to take his first in-game swings of the spring while Andrew Cashner starts on the mound. First pitch against the Blue Jays takes place at 1:05 p.m. from Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota.