Much like the story goes for the Toronto Blue Jays, the Baltimore Orioles are a solid team in an impossible division.
The 2008 season's results didn't particularly indicate success but the drafts and trades by Andy MacPhail indicate that you really CAN wait till next year.
Where have we heard that before?
Seriously though, this team has a ton of young talent mixed with wily veterans that could compete in 2010.
Personally, I wonder why they don't trade the veterans for a package of young talent to build for the future more so.
Although third baseman Melvin Mora and first baseman Aubrey Huff put together outstanding seasons in 2008, do either figure to be part of the future?
Mora put up 20-plus home runs and 100-plus RBIs in 2008 but his age, 36, may diminish his returns.
Huff on the other hand, is only 32-years-old and posted a 30-100 season with 40-plus doubles. He should be able to bring in a haul that would include a young shortstop that can supplant Cesar Izturis next year.
The list of young talent goes on forever for the Orioles with catcher Matt Wieters, outfielders Adam Jones and Nick Markakis leading the charge this season.
Jones and Wieters are on their way to superstardom if prospect rankings mean anything to you while Markakis is already there.
Even better news is that Markakis and table setter and second baseman Brian Roberts recently got contract extensions.
Those four players should provide a top of the order that will hang tough with the beasts from the AL East for years to come.
From an immediate standpoint, the rotation isn't in as great of shape but that to will change in 2010.
Despite a less than gaudy win total in 2008, Jeremy Guthrie isn't quite 30-years-old yet and just put together another season with an ERA under 4.00
The best news is that by 2010, Chris Tillman and Brian Matusz should be ready to go. Both are considered gems of the system as well as some of the best pitching prospects in baseball period.
But as for 2009, losing may be for the best because it locks in another top flight draft pick and lately, MacPhail knows how to pick em'.
- Wednesday, February 25, 2009
- Posted by M.J. Hartwig at 12:48 PM