Orioles top prospect Yusniel Diaz re-incorporated a leg lift in place of a toe-tap to his swing this year, which he said allows him to be more relaxed at the plate and helped him muscle out his first Grapefruit League home run Saturday against the Minnesota Twins.
Three Orioles prospects, including Yusniel Díaz, reported to Double-A Bowie on Thursday excited to continue their strong seasons after they were traded from the Los Angeles Dodgers for All-Star shortstop Manny Machado.
Orioles minor league pitcher Alex Katz was in West Virginia with Low-A Delmarva Sunday, but his side-project with friend Anthony De Lucia, KD Custom Kicks, had a major presence at the MLB All-Star Futures Game in Washington.
When the best prospects in baseball congregate Sunday in Washington for the Major League Baseball All-Star Futures Game, the Orioles will be sending two of their own — third baseman Ryan Mountcastle and left-hander Alex Wells — to represent the strengths of their farm system.
For the second installment of "One for the future," we’ll look at Alex Wells, the 21-year-old Australian left-hander who will be the Orioles’ first international prospect to represent them at the All-Star Futures Game this weekend since Cuban outfielder Dariel Álvarez did in 2014.
Catcher Caleb Joseph and infielder Ryan Flaherty, everyday players due to injuries at their positions in the first half, will spend the All-Star break recharging and adjusting to roles that might see their playing time reduced in the second half.
Outfielder Dariel Alvarez continued his smoldering June this week with a run of four-straight multi-hit games from Sunday through Wednesday, and took an eight-game hitting streak into the weekend. Alvarez's 1.055 OPS in his first 22 games of June was the best in the International League this month and third-best in all of Triple-A.
The Orioles knew they were going to send rookie right-hander Mychal Givens back to the minor leagues before Thursday afternoon's series finale against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, but wrestled with whether they should option the 25-year-old converted shortstop to Triple-A Norfolk or send him back to Double-A Bowie. There was discussion about sending Givens to Triple-A, where he could essentially go back to the minors with a promotion and continue to develop while facing more seasoned
According to multiple sources, teams asked the Orioles about the availability of several position prospects, including Triple-A Norfolk outfielder Dariel Alvarez and first baseman Christian Walker, Double-A Bowie outfielder Mike Yastrzemski and Low-A Delmarva catcher Chance Sisco.
Hunter Harvey, the Orioles' top pick in last year's amateur draft and one of their best pitching prospects, is out for the season with an elbow injury that at this point will require rest, not surgery, according to executive vice president Dan Duquette.
Cuban defector Henry Urrutia isn't getting called up to the majors quite yet -- he is starting in left for Triple-A Norfolk this afternoon -- but he's definitely continuing to build an impressive minor league resume.
Henry Urrutia was wildly successful at the Double-A level, hitting seven home runs and 16 doubles, driving in 37 runs and producing a .365/.433/.550 slash line in 52 games in Bowie. Last Wednesday, Urrutia was selected to participate in the All-Star Futures Game during the MLB's All-Star festivities in New York City. A day later, Orioles manager Buck Showalter announced that Urrutia was being promoted to Triple-A Norfolk.