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Weekly Prospect Update: Baltimore Orioles

So far we’ve looked at the top 10 prospects in the Yankees, Red Sox, and Rays farm systems. Moving through the American League East, we take a look at the Baltimore Orioles and how their top 10 prospects have been doing thus far.

Three months of the season are just about in the books, and players are pushing their way onto MLB rosters every day. As we approach the trade deadline, some of these prospects may find new homes. For now, here’s how the Orioles’ top 10 have fared.

10. Tanner Scott, LHP

The Orioles drafted Scott in the sixth round of the 2014 Draft. The 22-year-old reached Double-A in just his second full season, in large part due to his 100+ mph fastball. His fastball makes him a fit to close, but issues with his control have led to far too many walks. His slider is nowhere near his fastball in terms of effectiveness but could become more useful with increased consistency.

2017 stats (Double-A Bowie): 42 IP, 1.50 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 54 K, 26 BB.  

Scott has been solid out of the bullpen for the Bowie Baysox this season. He’s given up just seven earned runs in 42 innings of work. Compared to his disappointing 2016 campaign, Scott’s K/9 and BB/9 have both improved. He’s striking out 11.6 batters per nine innings while walking 5.6. Walks are still a problem for the lefty, but the fact that he’s trending in the right direction is a good sign. He’s pitched exactly three innings in each of his 14 appearances and has struck out three or more in all but two of them.

Tanner Scott has the upside of an elite closer if he can get a handle on his control issues. He’s still at least a year away from being considered as an addition to the Orioles bullpen but should provide a huge boost when he gets there.

9. Jomar Reyes, 3B

Reyes has sat toward the top of the Orioles’ system for four years now, since signing out of the Dominican Republic as a 16-year-old. He’s a powerful third baseman with plenty of bat speed but is a well-below-average runner. His lack of speed could force him to move to first base in the future. Reyes has had big problems staying healthy the last few seasons. He missed an extended period of time in 2015 with thumb and hand injuries and is currently on the DL with a broken pinky finger after punching a wall.

2017 stats (High-A Frederick): 21 games, .321/.361/.436, 1 HR, 10 RBI, 4 BB, 18 K.

The 20-year-old was off to a nice start before the injury and looked to be reestablishing himself as an exciting power hitting prospect after a disappointing 2016 season. He hasn’t played a game since late April but should be close to a return. Hand injuries are tricky, and Reyes has had three of them, so it’ll be interesting to watch how the most recent one will affect his hitting.

8. Anthony Santander, OF/1B

Santander was signed out of Venezuela in 2011 by the Indians and came over to the Orioles in the 2017 Rule 5 Draft. Like Reyes, Santander has had injury problems of his own. He sat out much of 2013 and 2014 with an elbow injury and underwent shoulder surgery last fall. However, when healthy Santander is a consistent hitter with above-average power from both sides of the plate.

2017 stats (Single-A Lynchburg): Has not played.    

2017 has not gone as planned for the 22-year-old, who hasn’t played in a game all season. While rehabbing from shoulder surgery, Santander has also dealt with forearm issues that have kept him sidelined since spring training. Right now his best bet at returning to action is late July or August.

7. Austin Hays, OF

The Orioles selected Hays in the third round of the 2016 Draft. He has above-average bat speed from the right side of the plate that has allowed him to hit for both average and power. He’s starting to show more and more power at the plate, especially over the last two seasons, and he should find even more as he develops. His above-average speed and developing power make Hays one of the more exciting prospects in the Orioles’ system.

2017 stats (High-A Frederick): 64 games, .328/.364/.592, 16 HR, 41 RBI, 12 BB, 40 K. (Double-A Bowie): 5 games, .300/.300/.550, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 K.   

Hays had been tearing up the Carolina League before earning a promotion to Double-A Bowie. His power has been even more impressive than scouts could have predicted, with 16 homers, 15 doubles, and three triples in 64 games. He hasn’t slowed down since being promoted to on June 22 either, collecting a hit in every game he’s played in so far. With this kind of production, Bowie may not be the last stop for Hayes in 2017.

It won’t be long before Hays works his way into’s Top 100 Prospects list. All he has done is hit, and he has shown no signs of stopping. While he hasn’t excelled on the basepaths just yet, his speed is another big part of his game that he hasn’t yet tapped into.

6. Chris Lee, LHP

Lee was a fourth-round Draft pick by the Astros in 2011 and was acquired by the Orioles in May 2015. Since joining the Orioles, his value has increased thanks to adjustments to his mechanics. He averages 89-93 mph with his fastball and has an above-average sweeping slider. He missed nearly all of 2016 with shoulder discomfort and has spent all of 2017 in Triple-A Norfolk.

2017 stats (Triple-A Norfolk): 68.0 IP, 3-4, 6.35 ERA, 1.85 WHIP, 50 K, 32 BB. 

2017 hasn’t been kind to Lee after three months of the season. He’s made 15 starts and has given up two earned runs or more in 10 of them. Lee’s control problems that he’s dealt with throughout his career have not gone away, as he is averaging 4.2 walks per nine innings. He’s coming off his worst start of the season on June 25, when he went just 3.1 innings, gave up nine hits, eight runs, walked two and struck out two.

Lee’s below-average changeup has gotten him into plenty of trouble this season, forcing him to pitch as basically a two-pitch pitcher. He’ll need to work on the pitch if he wants to stay in the rotation or else he could be ticketed to the bullpen moving forward.

5. Keegan Akin, LHP

Akin was taken in the second round of the 2016 Draft by the Orioles after an impressive junior year at Western Michigan. He’s a strong lefty with a fastball that reaches 96 mph and an above-average slider that sits in the low 80s. He has a simple pitching motion that allows him to be consistent on the mound.

2017 stats (High-A Frederick): 69.1 IP, 6-5, 3.76 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 76 K, 33 BB.

After opening the season with a start that lasted just 0.2 innings, yielded four hits, six runs, and three walks, Akin has been solid in 2017. He bounced back from the rough start and has lowered his ERA to 3.76 and WHIP to 1.33. He’s coming off his best start by far on June 27, when he threw eight innings of one-hit, shutout ball. He struck out six and walked three in the dominant performance.

Akin has the looks of a mid-rotation kind of guy with three pitches that rank average or better. The 22-year-old still has to work on his control and command before thinking about an MLB debut, but he is making plenty of strides in his first full season.

4. Ryan Mountcastle, SS

Mountcastle was drafted out of college by the Orioles in the first round of the 2015 Draft. Since then he has flourished as a hitter in his first full seasons of professional ball. The 20-year-old already has an advanced approach at the plate that allows him to use the whole field and make hard contact regularly. He’s an all-around good athlete with average speed and the ability to play multiple positions.

2017 stats (High-A Frederick): 73 games, .319/.345/.560, 14 HR, 44 RBI, 51 R, 10 BB, 52 K. 

The young shortstop has had a great 2017 campaign thus far with the Frederick Keys. He has especially turned it on during his current eight-game hitting streak in which he’s batting .353 with four doubles, two homers, and four RBI. He earned Carolina League All-Star honors back in mid-June, starting at DH for the North Division squad.

2017 has been somewhat of a breakout for Mountcastle so far. He’s already topped his home run totals from last year and has shown no signs of slowing down. If he keeps up this pace throughout the rest of the year, he has a great chance of cracking’s Top 100 next spring.

3. Hunter Harvey, RHP

Since being taken with the 22nd-overall pick in 2013, Harvey has had a rough start to his professional career due to injuries. He was shut down in his first full-season in 2014 with a right elbow strain and missed all of 2015 because of it. He made just five starts in 2016 before leaving with elbow discomfort that ultimately led to Tommy John surgery. We haven’t seen him much, but when Harvey is healthy he has great swing-and-miss potential. His fastball averages 94-96 mph that is complemented by a plus-plus curveball and a changeup.

2017 stats: Has not played. 

Harvey is still just 22, so while the injuries have been concerning, time is still on his side. He’s targeting an early August return, but the Orioles may want to take it slow with their possible future ace.

2. Cody Sedlock, RHP

Sedlock was made a first-round Draft pick in 2016, being selected No. 27 overall by the Orioles. His fastball reaches 96 mph with a lot of sink that helps him generate plenty of groundballs and keep the ball in the park. He throws a curveball and changeup into the mix, both of which have average potential. Sedlock has plenty of competitiveness and a desire to pitch deep into games that help him project as a No. 3 starter in the future.

2017 stats (High-A Frederick): 62.2 IP, 4-4, 6.46 ERA, 1.66 WHIP, 53 K, 26 BB.

Sedlock started the season with four strong outings but has since struggled on the mound. He’s given up five or more runs in six of his 13 starts, including five in each of his two most recent ones.

1. Chance Sisco, C Lists: Top 100 Prospects (#86), Top 10 C Prospects (#5)

The Orioles’ top prospect and only player to appear on any of’s lists has quickly risen through the minor leagues. Sisco was drafted in 2013 and has since played at every level of the Orioles’ system. He was named the Orioles’ Minor League Player of the Year award in 2016 and earned a promotion to Triple-A Norfolk. Sisco is a very advanced hitter who boasts a career .402 OBP over four seasons.

2017 stats: (Triple-A Norfolk): 61 games, .266/.342/.383, 3 HR, 28 RBI, 31 R, 22 BB, 66 K.

Sisco looked to be finally turning things on to start June, batting .400 in his first 14 games. However, he has really struggled at the plate to close out the month. In his last seven games, he’s batting just .125 with eight strikeouts. Every player goes through slumps, so it’s likely that this is the case with Sisco.

The Orioles lack a standout catcher, so it’s very possible that Sisco could make his MLB debut as early as this season. Regardless, he’ll likely be in the mix for a starting job next spring. Consistent catchers are always hard to come by in fantasy leagues, so give Sisco a look in dynasty formats.


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