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Orioles select SS Richie Martin with 1st pick of Rule 5 Draft

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So far in June, Martin is slashing .259/.310/.481, with a .333 wOBA and 108 wRC+.  So much better than April and May.  Will it continue?  I'm not sure, but this is a nice hot streak riding out and is sure to raise Martin's confidence. 

This is a guy with a lot of potential.  He was a former first round pick of the Athletics, but really struggled offensively through the minors until last year, when they gave him an eye test and found he had issues seeing the ball.  What followed was the best year by far with his bat.  The defense was always there, but he's also struggled there at times.  UZR pegs him close to neutral, while DRS has him -8.  I am not certain, but I believe those numbers have improved since the start as well. The Athletics were not able to protect him, given that they have a lot of prospects right now in the high minors. 

The rarity of Rule 5 picks under the current rules doing anything to benefit the club is rare.  Adubel Herrera performing as a key player is very rare.  More often, Ryan Flaherty's are the result of the Rule 5 draft.  Martin could very well see time in AAA next year regardless, but he is absolutely worth taking a flier on and keeping him all season.  I hope his current hot streak in June is a sign of things to come.  

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o

 

(vs. RED SOX, 6/15)

 

Martin just made a defensive play that was reminiscent of Manny Machado's Orioles lore play from 2012.

He faked the throw to 1st base, and then threw behind the runner at 2nd base who overran the bag ........ just like Machado did when he faked the throw to 1st base and then threw behind the runner at 3rd base.

 

The call was overturned, but it was an incredibly heads-up play.

 

o

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2 hours ago, Cy Bundy said:

Martin is abysmal 

dreadful, awful, terrible, frightful, atrocious, disgraceful, deplorable, shameful, woeful, hopeless, lamentable, laughable, substandard, poor, inadequate, inferior, unsatisfactory, rotten, appalling, crummy, pathetic, pitiful, useless, lousy, shocking, dire.

The Orioles have a problem in that area with this list of "ABYSMAL" shortstops over the years.

Ruben Tejada    -0.1        WAR/pos             2017       To           2017

Pedro Florimon -0.1        WAR/pos             2011       To           2011

Luis Hernandez -0.1        WAR/pos             2007       To           2008

Mike Moriarty   -0.1        WAR/pos             2002       To           2002

Buddy Peterson               -0.1        WAR/pos             1957       To           1957

Eider Torres        -0.2        WAR/pos             2008       To           2008

Ozzie Guillen      -0.3        WAR/pos             1998       To           1998

Chico Carrasquel              -0.3        WAR/pos             1959       To           1959

Bobby Bonner   -0.4        WAR/pos             1980       To           1983

Frank Baker        -0.4        WAR/pos             1973       To           1974

Paul Janish          -0.6        WAR/pos             2015       To           2017

Everth Cabrera  -0.9        WAR/pos             2015       To           2015

Foster Castleman             -1.1        WAR/pos             1958       To           1958

Juan Castro         -1.2        WAR/pos             2008       To           2008

Alex Cintron       -1.2        WAR/pos             2008       To           2008

Willy Miranda    -1.3        WAR/pos             1957       To           1959

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3 hours ago, Going Underground said:

Is Wilkerson any better? 37 strikeouts in his last 30 games.OBP is bad and misses cut off men alot.

I don't know if Wilkerson could play a decent shortstop.  At least the bat appears to be turning around in June for Martin.  I am concerned that his defense, which was scouted as being close to major league ready, doesn't quite look that way.  But that could be a confidence issue.  

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On 6/15/2019 at 8:18 PM, Going Underground said:

Is Wilkerson any better? 37 strikeouts in his last 30 games.OBP is bad and misses cut off men alot.

Wilkerson is awful as well.  I guess that is why we are on a 45 win pace.  So many guys who have no right being in the big leagues.

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7 hours ago, Cy Bundy said:

In June he’s batting under .200 and striking out 34% of the time. 

He had a terrible pop up on his first AB last night. Man on 3rd with 1 out, pops it up on the first swing.

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On 6/11/2019 at 1:15 PM, Camden_yardbird said:

Fine.  Joakim Soria, Josh Hamilton, Marwin Gonzalez, Shane Victorino, Dan Uggla.  There are a number of players that still prove my point.  And a few of these guys were legit pieces on championship teams.

Victorino and Uggla were before the rule changes. We all know why Josh Hamilton was available. 

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I guess the question around Martin is can the Orioles find a SS on the WW with as good or better long-term upside as Martin?  My understanding is there's not really anyone in our minor leagues who is equipped to play SS in the ML right now.  If we can find a SS on the WW who has more upside than Martin to replace him, then sure, cut him.  But if not, there's not really any point.  He's here for his glove in the short term, and then long term the hope is he figures things out with his bat after a year at Norfolk in 2020.  We'll need Martin's glove even more if we trade Villar this season.  

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16 minutes ago, FanSince88 said:

I guess the question around Martin is can the Orioles find a SS on the WW with as good or better long-term upside as Martin?  My understanding is there's not really anyone in our minor leagues who is equipped to play SS in the ML right now.  If we can find a SS on the WW who has more upside than Martin to replace him, then sure, cut him.  But if not, there's not really any point.  He's here for his glove in the short term, and then long term the hope is he figures things out with his bat after a year at Norfolk in 2020.  We'll need Martin's glove even more if we trade Villar this season.  

He has played the major league short stop position for the worst team for league minimum. At a minimum.

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24 minutes ago, FanSince88 said:

I guess the question around Martin is can the Orioles find a SS on the WW with as good or better long-term upside as Martin?  My understanding is there's not really anyone in our minor leagues who is equipped to play SS in the ML right now.  If we can find a SS on the WW who has more upside than Martin to replace him, then sure, cut him.  But if not, there's not really any point.  He's here for his glove in the short term, and then long term the hope is he figures things out with his bat after a year at Norfolk in 2020.  We'll need Martin's glove even more if we trade Villar this season.  

I don't disagree. Even though there is no better alternative, we still have every right to complain about how bad he is. 😠

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13 minutes ago, Aristotelian said:

I don't disagree. Even though there is no better alternative, we still have every right to complain about how bad he is. 😠

I'm inclined to cut the guy a bit of slack.  He's never had a single AAA at bat.  He'll never hit for power.  It took him until last year to have an OPS over .725 in the minors.  If he can push his OBP over .300, and play up to his potential on defense, he'll have value.  That probably won't happen this season, but it could in late 2020 or 2021.  

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Even though he's terrible with the bat, I think he's decent with the glove.

He's not the worst thing about this season.  I don't think the other options are much better and I'd rather have Villar at 2nd.  And who knows, Villar might be traded here soon anyway.

By no means do I think Richie is a long term option but for the rest of this season and as a backup for next season?  Sure.  

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33 minutes ago, Moose Milligan said:

Even though he's terrible with the bat, I think he's decent with the glove.

He's not the worst thing about this season.  I don't think the other options are much better and I'd rather have Villar at 2nd.  And who knows, Villar might be traded here soon anyway.

By no means do I think Richie is a long term option but for the rest of this season and as a backup for next season?  Sure.  

Agree 100% can’t think of a single justifiable reason to give up on him based on where our team is. Development with certain players can be very strange, he was a late bloomer in the minors, could do the same in majors. If he ends up being just good AAAA depth, good major league teams has that ready for injuries.

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