Organizational Talent Rankings via Baseball America
2013 (17) | 2012 (20) | 2011 (21) | 2010 (8) | 2009 (9)

2013 Affiliate Records
MLB: [85-77] AL East
AAA: [77-67] International League – Norfolk
AA: [71-71] Eastern League – Bowie
A+: [61-78] Carolina League – Frederick
A: [54-82] South Atlantic League – Delmarva
A(ss): [40-32] New York-Penn League — Aberdeen

Graduated Prospects
T.J. McFarland (LHP); Steve Johnson (RHP)

The Run Down
Hey, it’s our first weekend post! Draft season must be near. Rejoice!  And when you’re done rejoicing, feel free to take in some words about the Baltimore Orioles farm, a top heavy group, but its headliners are extreme high-impact.  There’s a case to be made for Kevin Gausman being the top rookie pitcher in 2014, and it’s equally plausible that Dylan Bundy could carry that title in 2015.  The top three arms in this group are about as impressive a trio as you’ll find across Minor League Baseball.  On the other side of things, however, there aren’t many heavy hitters here.  This Baltimore system is depleted when it comes to power bats, and it’s fairly light on offensive talent as a whole.  But considering the absurd power and general awesomeness of their big league hitters, I doubt that O’s fans are too concerned right now with that aspect of their farm.

Top Ten Fantasy Prospects
1.  Kevin Gausman, RHP:  Gausman was seven outs away from graduating his prospect status in 2013, so I’m feeling sorta fortunate to still be able to include him on this list because, for fantasy purposes, this Orioles farm is thin, and I didn’t really want to dig much deeper than the 10 we have here.  Anyway, Gausman is as high-impact as they come, and among the 2014 SP rookies, he needs to be considered in the same class as Masahiro Tanaka and Taijuan Walker.  His 2013 line (5.66/1.34/49 in 47 IP) is, perhaps, influencing some to overlook the 22-year-old’s potential, but take it from me — that’d be unwise.  Superb command of three plus offerings (FB, CH, SL) give Gausman a front-end arsenal, and he’s in position to be pitching in the O’s rotation to begin the season.  As is the case with any young pitcher, there’s plenty that can go wrong, and inconsistencies are to be expected.  That said, it wouldn’t surprise me if Gausman were a top 15 SP in 2014.  ETA:  2014

2.  Dylan Bundy, RHP:  Bundy is working his way back from TJ surgery, and he’s only recently begun throwing.  He’s on track to return to live action sometime around mid-season, and there remains hope that he could be of service to the Orioles come August or September.  I wouldn’t bank on that, though.  More likely, Baltimore proceeds with extreme caution with their prized 21-year-old hurler, and even if he does surface in the bigs this season, his real fantasy impact won’t be until 2015.  Bundy still brings ace potential, but a lot remains to be seen on that end, as, contrary to popular belief, return to form after Tommy John is not a sure thing.  ETA:  Late 2014

3.  Hunter Harvey, RHP:  The 22nd overall pick in June, Harvey is yet another arm in this Baltimore org that brings legitimate front-of-the-rotation potential.  Like all high school draftees, his development will require some patience, but the 19-year-old has the makings of three plus pitches (FB, CB, CH), and at 6-foot-3, 175, he already looks the part.  Harvey will make is full-season debut in 2014 and he’s a must-own in all dynasty formats.  ETA:  2017

4.  Jonathan Schoop, 2B:  An impressive athlete with good skills at the plate, Schoop is the type of 2B who can offer fantasy relevance.  Injury disrupted his 2013 season, so it’s really not worth digging into his line, but throughout his minor league career, the 22-year-old has shown projectable skills at the plate.  Once he’s settled in the bigs, 20 HR seasons and an AVG in the neighborhood of .265 seems like an attainable projection.  ETA:  2014

5.  Henry Urrutia, OF:  While he doesn’t offer the type of power you’d hope for from a corner outfielder, Urrutia can hit.  The 26-year-old Cuban posted a .347/.406/.506 line in 81 games between Double-A and Triple-A in 2013, and he’s more than capable of hitting .300+ at the highest level right now.  He’ll compete for a spot on the big club this spring.  ETA:  2014

6.  Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP:  Rodriguez doesn’t bring the upside that the arms above offer, but he’s a safe bet to work his way into the Baltimore rotation sometime in the near future.  2013 saw him excel at the High-A level (2.85/1.21/66 in 85 IP) before regressing somewhat at Double-A — a pattern that should be familiar to folks who follow prospects.  The 20-year-old’s fastball/slider combo is whiff-inducing, and it will only improve as he gains more experience versus the advanced hitters of the upper levels.  If his changeup makes progress, the overall outlook will improve, but for now, Rodriguez looks like a solid mid-rotation starter.  ETA:  Late 2014

7.  Chance Sisco, C:  Sisco is new to catching, so he’s going to require extreme patience, but there’s intriguing potential here, especially for fantasy purposes.  The 18-year-old is praised for his advanced approach, but the bat speed and hand-eye both grade above average, and altogether the offensive skill set is quite promising.  Sisco should get his first chance at full-season ball in 2014, and with a solid debut, he could be near the top of this list next year.  ETA:  2017

8.  Mike Wright, RHP:  Wright mixes four pitches (FB, CH, CB, SL), and he pounds the strike zone with all of ’em.  Granted, not one of those offerings stands out as being especially great, but all four have the potential to be above average, and they play up thanks to a deceptive delivery.  The 24-year-old posted a 2013 line at 3.11/1.31/138 in 150 IP between Double-A and Triple-A.  He’ll be considered for starts in Baltimore if a need should arise at any point this season.  ETA:  2014

9.  Tim Berry, LHP:  This is where the impact potential on this list takes a severe dive.  Berry is a fine prospect, and he very likely has a career in front of him as a MLB pitcher, but the profile here doesn’t offer much excitement for fantasy purposes.  A nice fastball/change combo and a work-in-progress curve give the 22-year-old a starter’s repertoire, and if everything clicks, there’s #3 starter upside.  More likely, Berry ends up at the back of the rotation.  ETA:  2015

10.  Christian Walker, 1B:  Walker doesn’t offer the kind of pop you’d expect from a 1B, but he’s a skilled hitter, as evidenced by the .300/.362/.453 line he posted across three levels (A-, A+, AA) in his first full-season of pro baseball.  There’s James Loney-ish potential here.  How exciting.  ETA:  2015