Michael Burgess is making a strong case for why he should return to Double-A baseball.
The right fielder at High-A Frederick -- who spent the past two years at the Double-A level in other farm systems before being signed by the Orioles in the offseason -- has terrorized opposing pitchers while with the Keys.
In his last 10 games, Burgess, 25, is hitting .389 with a 1.049 on-base-plus slugging percentage, raising his season batting average to .280.
Burgess’ recent tear was highlighted by a 3-for-3 performance on May 18, when he hit a home run and drove in four in the Keys’ 7-6 loss to Winston-Salem.
Though he was once a first-round pick in 2007 and twice a minor league All-Star, Burgess is now a prototypical organizational player, meaning he’ll likely spend the majority of his career in the minor leagues. Instead of being considered as a prospect, he fills roles as needed in Frederick and, if necessary, could eventually make an appearance or two for the Orioles.
But so far this season, he has been a standout for the Keys, boasting the fourth-highest batting average on the team for a regular player and the ninth-best slugging percentage in the Carolina League (.457).
Shortstop Adrian Marin was named the Carolina League Player of the Week on Monday after hitting .429 from May 26-June 2. The 20-year-old had seven doubles, 11 RBIs and three multi-hit performances in six games during that span.
But since then, Marin, touted by Baseball America for his defensive prowess, has gone 0-for-7 with a strikeout.
Right-hander Branden Kline, the Orioles’ second-round pick in 2012, rebounded from a string of unimpressive performances with a solid outing on Monday.
The 22-year-old pitched 6 2/3 innings and picked up the loss despite allowing only one run in Frederick’s 3-0 loss to Wilmington. He scattered six hits and struck out five and avoided trouble until the seventh inning, when he surrendered two singles and two walks.
Kline is now 3-2 with a 3.21 ERA in 12 starts.