Orioles Prospects: 3 Up, 3 Down

As we’ve reached the midway point of the season, it’s time to start trying to identify which prospects have improved their stock so far this season. Getting ahead of the curve on perceived prospect value can give you an edge in your dynasty leagues. Here are three Oriole prospects who have added value this season, and three whose value have plummeted.

Trending Up

Austin Hays, OF

Hays continues to impress. To begin the year, the Orioles skipped Hays over single A Delmarva and started the athletic outfielder in High-A Frederick. Hays rewarded the Orioles faith by dominating the Carolina League. He hit .328 with 34 extra base hits in 64 games with the Keys, earning a start in the Carolina League All Star Game.  After the game he was promoted to AA Bowie and he has kept hitting at his torrid pace. He has been one of the most productive hitters in all of the minors this season. There are concerns that better pitching will slow Hays down, but it hasn’t happened yet. The Orioles don’t have any long term pieces locked down in the outfield in Baltimore, so if Hays keeps hitting he could carve out a role at the big league level in the coming years. Hays is a definite add for dynasty league owners. If your league doesn’t allow in-season prospect adds, grab Hays early in next year’s minor league draft, as he is sure to grab some Top 100 prospect love.

Cedric Mullins, OF

Like Hays, Mullins has also put up some flashy numbers this season. During Spring Training Mullins made an impression on the big league club with his play. The team rewarded Mullins by starting him in AA Bowie. He started the year at a scorching pace and was being mentioned as a breakout. A hamstring injury, which was originally supposed to keep him out of action for two weeks, sidelined him for nearly two months. Mullins returned in early June and continued to hit. Unfortunately he hit the DL again with a recurrence of the hamstring injury. He profiles as a speedy, top-of-the-order type hitter and should be on fantasy owners’ radars.

Brenan Hanifee, RHP

Hanifee was the Orioles 4th round draft pick out of a Virginia high school in 2016. He didn’t pitch after he signed and only recently debuted for A-Short Season Aberdeen. The results have been impressive. Through three starts Hanifee is sporting a 1.50 ERA and has struck out 13 in 18 innings. Hanifee was a late bloomer who did not get a lot of exposure until late in his senior year of high school. He currently throws in the low 90’s and is developing his off speed pitches, but at 6-5 he has room to grow. He is off to a quick start against college age competition, and should he continue to perform at this level, should shoot up the Orioles prospects list. At this point he is a late round add, but dynasty players should continue to monitor.

 

Trending Down

Cody Sedlock, SP

The Orioles 1st round draft pick out of Illinois in the 2016 draft, Sedlock has so far had mixed results. While the early returns were positive, lately Sedlock’s performance and numbers have been a cause for concern.  Sedlock was thought to be an advanced pitcher with command of 4 pitches, but so far the results have been less than encouraging. His ERA his hovering north of 6.00 and he is having trouble pitching deep into games. After his last start Sedlock was placed on the DL with an elbow flexor strain. He had a heavy workload while he was in college, which caused some concern for potential drafters, leading him to fall into the 20’s. Hopefully his arm proves to be healthy long term, but right now there is definitely cause for concern. His stock is going down in terms of dynasty.

Chris Lee, SP

Lee was acquired from the Astros for international bonus money a few years back. He looked promising in AA last season, but was shut down for the majority of the year with an injury that was originally labeled as minor. He has never been a strikeout pitcher and has been hit hard this year at AAA Norfolk. He entered the year as a sleeper candidate with potential to impact the major league rotation. That could still happen given the state of the Orioles major league rotation. But even if he gets a taste of Major League ball, it is uncertain what he would offer to dynasty owners.

Jomar Reyes, 3B

The Orioles signed Reyes for $350,000 out of the Dominican in 2014 – the last time they spent any real money in Latin America. Reyes has failed to consistently stay on the field due to injuries. He is currently sidelined after he broke a finger punching a wall in late April. The Orioles said he would return in late June, but he is still on the shelf. When healthy, Reyes’ best attribute is said to be his power, however his in-season home run totals are modest. He is still young, and has time to turn it around, but his value in dynasty leagues has definitely plummeted over the past season.

Article featured image of Cedric Mullins – courtesy Twitter/MLBPipeline

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