I would go Bradish game 1, no question. He's earned it
Means game 2 because it's in Camden Yards. Teams will put righties up to face him and we have Waltimore to help protect against the long ball
Grayson game 3 on the road
Tough choice between Gibson or Kremer for game 4, but I bet Hyde gives the vet the nod.
I think that means Bradish is available for game 5
Adley - Had pretty much the same results as last year while playing 39 more games which are simply outstanding for a catcher. Handled the pitching staff as a leader, controlled the running game and hit well - 810 OPS. But his offense was very different this year. In 2002 he hit righties - 889 OPS vs lefties - 552 OPS. In 2023 he flipped that righties -778 OPS vs lefties - 895 OPS. He hits much better as a DH (874 OPS) vs C (786 OPS). He is an on base machine 374 OBP. He leads the team and the winning culture with his attitude and hugs. Grade A
McCann - Agree
Mountcastle - In an injury plagued year that cost him 132 at bats his biggest improvement was to his OBP at 328 compared to 309 in 2021 and 305 in 2022. He seemed to adjust to the wall that has cost him power by hitting more up the middle. While sharing 1B with O'Hearn instead of Mancini and DH with Adley he killed lefties with a 1052 OPS but fell off vs righties with a 640 OPS. He seem like a platoon player at times. He hit better as a DH (900 OPS) vs 1B (754). None of this is consistent on a year over year basis. Some years he hits rights better, some years lefties, some years better as a 1B and some as a DH. Grade C+ while noting his improved OBP which is major IMO.
O'Hearn - Agree
Frazier - Agree
Gunnar - He has come so far so fast. Deserves MVO. Took over SS. Much better SS than 3B at this point IMO. Offensive weapon. Grade A+
Urias - Fell off in power from 16 HR to 4 HR and drop in defense may have cost him his spot on the roster. Grade D+
Mateo - Began the season as a potential starting SS but became a Backup SS. As a utility player his speed on the base path and ability to steal (32 steals) is a weapon. A game changer in close games which the O's play a lot. Defense at SS dropped from elite to be roughly compared to Gunnar which is still a very high level. Can't hit. Grade as a utility player is a B-.
Hays - Has become a first half player over the last two years. All-Star first half followed by a beat up body that costs him offensively in the 2nd half. He plays hard. Defensive standout in spite of losing speed as the year goes on due to injuries he plays through. Wall has cost him some power but like Mountcastle the improved OBP to 325 is a impressive. Agree with B- grade.
Mullins - Agree. Injuries cost him greatly. Amazing he can play defense at such a high level even with the injuries. Grade C+ but an All Star when healthy.
Santander - Agree
Hicks - Wow. Where did that come from. Showed up at just the right time with Mullins injury and was a solid performer. Unexpected. Not the best backup centerfielder because his speed is average but can catch what he gets to. Fine in the corners. Grade B-
McKenna - Agree
Westburg - Better that expected at 2B. Rangy. Solid. Not as good at 3B. SS only in emergencies. Nice break in to the majors. Future looks bright. Grade B looks good.
If you play Texas, they are excellent Vs righties or lefties.
OPaCY is much tougher on lefties (and righties) than Globe Field is.
So, you may go with GRod in game 2 because the lefties are going to struggle to hit more in OPACY anyway but at the end of the day, it may not make of a difference.
They also may just want the rookie pitching at home.
Kyle Gibson is intriguing. He has a high OPS against the Rangers but he pitched for them in 2021 And he has a sub 3 ErA at home that year. In its first full year, Globe had a 97 park effect. This year it’s 106. So that’s a factor too.
Thanks for a great detailed report @Frobby.
I'm not sure I understand how the stats for Rutschman and McCann warrant identical B- grades. Sure... Adley missed high expectations and McCann was better than last year's backups, but for me their "test scores" would not each receive the same grade.