Catcher Adley Rutschman’s main league debut is now a step nearer, with the Orioles’ prime prospect reporting to High-A Aberdeen to finish a rehab project this week.
Rutschman missed a spot on the Opening Day roster when he was sidelined with a proper tricep pressure as main league spring coaching started. But the 24-year-old has steadily progressed from the damage over the previous month following a multiweek shutdown from baseball actions. Manager Brandon Hyde mentioned April 13 that Rutschman had begun to take batting observe.
A rehab project this week with the IronBirds is one other constructive growth, a return to aggressive baseball that indicators a possible call-up may very well be on the horizon. Earlier this month, General Manager Mike Elias hinted at Rutschman receiving a significant league alternative as soon as wholesome.
“As soon as he kind of returns to being a full-activity version of himself and we understand that his timing’s back, I think he’s gonna pick right back up where he left off, which was with a very clear shot to impact this team,” Elias mentioned April 7.
Rutschman, the highest choose of the 2019 MLB draft, has backed up that lofty choice within the minors up to now. Last 12 months, the Oregon State product hit .285/.397/.502 throughout Double-A and Triple-A. In his 43 video games for Triple-A Norfolk, Rutschman’s common jumped to .312.
His proper tricep pressure throughout spring coaching occurred on the “exact worst moment possible,” Elias mentioned, and saved Rutschman from coaching with large leaguers. There was an opportunity that Rutschman proved throughout spring coaching he was worthy of being the Orioles’ beginning catcher, however the damage prevented him from being prepared for Opening Day.
The setback misplaced Rutschman no less than two weeks of main league service time, which may provide Baltimore one other 12 months of crew management earlier than Rutschman hits free company. The new collective bargaining settlement the league and gamers’ union agreed to this offseason does provide Rutschman an opportunity to obtain a full 12 months of service time if he finishes within the prime two of American League Rookie the Year voting.
Before Rutschman arrives in Baltimore, he’ll possible see time at Triple-A Norfolk once more, guaranteeing his swing timing is there earlier than he makes the bounce to the majors.
In addition to Rutschman, right-hander Rico Garcia will function with Aberdeen on a rehab project. And left-hander DL Hall will report back to the IronBirds too as he continues his growth from final season’s stress response in his left elbow.
Hall, whom Baseball America ranks because the No. 3 prospect within the Orioles’ pipeline, may discover his strategy to the majors this season, as nicely. The 23-year-old threw 31 2/3 innings for Double-A Bowie final 12 months earlier than his season was shut down, however he appeared in spring coaching and hurled 100-mph fastballs. He remained in Florida for prolonged spring coaching time with Baltimore monitoring his well being intently.