Arizona Fall League
Nolan Reimold: In 53 at bats, Reimold is hitting an underwhelming .226/.328/.434. His trademark secondary skills were intact, but his batting average was hampered by 21 strikeouts. It’s a small sample size, but it’s another reason that he should probably at least start 2008 in Norfolk.
Blake Davis: In 28 at bats, Davis is hitting .250/.323/.286. He’s seen time at both middle infield positions and reports on his defense have been glowing.
Jeff Fiorentino: Fio hasn’t looked good in his 25 at bats, hitting an empty .120. He’s looking more and more like a reserve outfielder, but a player who can hit from the left side and fill in at all three spots isn’t entirely without value.
Jake Arrieta: Arrieta has looked great in his professional debut, hitting 94 MPH and dealing 10 scoreless frames out of the bullpen. He’s making a case to be fast-tracked and he could rank among the top prospects in the organization by the end of next season.
Jim Johnson: J.J. has looked his usual solid self in Arizona, working mostly from the bullpen. He’ll probably start 2008 back in Norfolk, but he’ll be among the first arms called upon if the O’s go with an all homegrown rotation next year.
David Haehnel: Haehnel’s downward slide is continuing in the AFL. He’s posted a 9.45 ERA in 6.2 innings, walking more than he’s struck out. It might be time to stop thinking that the experiment to use him as a starter was the problem. He hasn’t looked very good since returning to relief work, either.
Hayden Penn: In 3 starts, Penn’s control has been understandably absent. 10 K’s in 6 frames, however, confirm the scouting reports that his stuff is pretty much back. He’ll likely start 2008 back in Norfolk, but don’t be surprised if he ends up with some significant innings in Baltimore.
Bob McCrory: Baltimore’s latest hope for a homegrown closer, McCrory has looked excellent in the AFL, even closing out the East Division’s 3-2 victor over the West Division with a perfect 9th inning. The Orioles recently added him to the 40-man roster to protect him in the Rule 5 Draft and it shouldn’t be long before he forces his way onto the 25-man roster.
Michael Hollman is the Senior Writer for Inside The Warehouse and can be reached via e-mail at Publisher@InsideTheWarehous.com