Previewing the 2017 Delmarva Shorebirds

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Cody Sedlock and Austin Hays^

Hey guys, welcome to another round of the SAL team preview series, I’m excited to get these going again. Today I’ll be talking about the Delmarva Shorebirds (theshorebirds.com on Twitter @Shorebirds) as I continue alphabetically around the league. The Shorebirds are the minor league affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles.

Previously I covered:

The Asheville Tourists (Rockies) Previewing the 2017 Asheville Tourists

The Augusta Greenjackets (Giants) Previewing the 2017 Augusta Greenjackets

The Charleston Riverdogs (Yankees) Previewing the 2017 Charleston Riverdogs

and the Columbia Fireflies (Mets) Previewing the 2017 Columbia Fireflies

For those not familiar with the SAL team preview series, I scour the lower levels of each organization and speculate on who might be coming to the Sally in 2017 and whenever possible I try to include a scouting report. It’s a lengthy process but I enjoy it and I learn a ton from it.

For the purpose of this piece I studied the 2016 Delmarva Shorebirds, Aberdeen Ironbirds and the GCL Orioles.

I want to thank my friend Patrick Cavey for supplying nearly all of the photo’s for this piece (all of them except Ofelky Peralta).  If you want to see more of his excellent work click here.  He really is one of the best in the business. https://www.facebook.com/baseballfuture/

At Notes from the Sally it’s all about live look scouting. So when I see the Shorebirds you can expect write ups on many of the players I have listed below.   I set a personal goal to see every team in the Sally twice in the 1st half of 2017 (April 7th- June 18th).  I’m planning to see the Shorebirds on opening day in Greenville and again in late May in Greensboro.  There’s plenty of time to get into all of that though.

Lets meet the notables

 

RHP- Cody Sedlock- Age 21, listed 6’3″ 190 lbs, bats and throws right.  Sedlock was drafted by the Orioles 27th overall in the 2016 draft out of the Univ of Illinois.

John Sickles of Minor League Ball wrote about Sedlock pre draft, here’s a snippet from that:

“Listed at 6-4, 210, Sedlock has turned up the heat, going from 87-90 in high school to 91-94 now with peaks at 95-96. An erratic high school slurve is now separated into a distinct slider in the 80s and power curve in the upper 70s, both solid offerings. He has a standard change-up as well but it isn’t as good as the breaking stuff and will need more development, though again it is better than it was in high school. Although his command is not perfect it has steadily improved. He hasn’t been overworked and has a shot at being a very durable starting pitcher.”

For much more on Sedlock click here: http://www.minorleagueball.com/2016/6/5/11833946/2016-mlb-draft-cody-sedlock-rhp-university-of-illinois

 

 

 

Ofelky Peralta, courtesy of https://c3.staticflickr.com/6/5628/23170836050_ea62d2fc51_b.jpg

RHP) Ofelky Peralta- Age 19, listed 6’5″ 195 lbs, bats and throws right.  Peralta was signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2013.  I missed Peralta in 2016 unfortunately.  He’s a high ceiling power right hander that’s still quite raw. There’s a good chance he starts 2017 back in the Sally.

mlb.com wrote this as part of there top 30 Orioles prospects:

“Peralta had the ability to throw his fastball in the mid-90s in 2015 and was up to 98 mph in the fall during instructional league. The 6-foot-5 right-hander is still much more thrower than pitcher, though he made progress with his secondary stuff, a hard slider and raw changeup. Peralta’s long limbs and lanky frame lead to problems repeating his delivery, though the Orioles helped him make a few tweaks during instructs, and he threw more strikes as a result.”

For more on Peralta and the rest of the O’s top 30 click here: http://m.mlb.com/prospects/2016?list=bal

 

 

LHP) Keegan Akin- Age on opening day 22, listed 6′ 225 lbs, bats and throws left.  Akin was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2016 out of Western Michigan Univ.

Tony from O’s Hangout has a nice write up on Akin: http://forum.orioleshangout.com/forums/index.php?/topic/27019-2016-4-prospect-keegan-akin-lhp/

And Pressbox lays out some interesting facts about Akin and the O’s: https://www.pressboxonline.com/2016/11/24/five-things-to-know-about-orioles-lhp-prospect-keegan-akin

 

 

RHP) Matthias Dietz- Age 21, listed 6’5″ 220 lbs, bats and throws right.  Dietz was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2016 draft out of John A Logan College in Carterville, IL.

Rich Wilson at Prospect 361 recently counted down his top 10 Orioles prospects recently and had this to say about Dietz:

Scouting Report: “Dietz has a promising combination of stuff and pitching mechanics that gives him a ceiling of a #3/#4 starter at the highest level.  His arsenal consists of a fastball that sits 92 to 94 MPH but can bump higher when he needs something extra.  His best secondary pitch is an 84 to 85 MPH slider that misses bat when he’s able to throw it for strikes.  He shows a feel for a change-up but it’s definitely his third pitch.”

For more on Dietz and the rest of the Orioles top prospects list click here, it’s a good read:  Baltimore Orioles

 

 

RF) Austin Hays- Age 21, listed 6’1″ 195 lbs, bats and throws right. Hays was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2016 out of Jacksonville Univ. (Jacksonville, Fl).

mlb.com said this about Hays in there Orioles top 30 which they released over the Summer:

“The right-handed-hitting Floridian uses a short and handsy swing to consistently make the ball jump off his bat. Hays doesn’t waste a lot of motion and has shown both the ability to hit for average and power, albeit it in a weaker conference. It might be more gap pop at the next level, although Hays has shown some over-the-fence ability in the past. Defensively, his plus arm also profiles well in right field, where he is a very capable defender.”

For more on Hays and the rest of the O’s top 30 prospects, click here: http://m.mlb.com/prospects/2016?list=bal

 

Around the diamond

There are no obvious choices at catcher but Stuart Levy could be back and one of Daniel Fajardo, Alfredo Gonzalez, Ronald Soto, Chris Shaw, Jerry McClanahan could emerge.

 

Middle Infield

2B) Alejandro Juvier- Age on opening day 21, listed 6’1″ 180 lbs, bats left, throws right.  Juvier was drafted in the 15th round of the High School in Doral, Fl (Miami area).  He struggled with the bat across 2 levels in 2016 after having a very good 2015 albiet in a small sample size.

Juvier could slide to 3rd if Drew Turbin comes back.

SS) Irving Ortega- Age 20, listed 6’2″ 165 lbs, bats and throws right. Ortega was signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2014.

Tony from O’s Hangout has a good piece on Ortega (sounds promising): http://forum.orioleshangout.com/forums/index.php?/topic/22849-irving-ortega-ss-2015-scouting-report/#comment-1796941

2B/SS) Alexis Torres- Age 19, listed 6′ 183 lbs, bats and throws right. Torres was drafted in the 5th round of the 2016 draft out of High School in Puerto Rico.  He struggled offensively in his 1st look at professional pitching but he’s young.  I think there’s a good chance he’s the starting SS for Aberdeen in 2017.

Other candidates for the middle Infield positions: Drew Turbin (2B) could be back, Guillermo Salas (SS, 2B), Chris Clare (SS, 3B), Jamie Estrada (2B, 3B).

 

Corner Infield

1B) Preston Palmeiro (Rafael’s son)- Age on opening day 22, listed 5’11” 180 lbs, Bats left, throws right.  Palmeiro was drafted in the 7th round of the 2016 draft out of NC State Univ.

1B) Seamus Curran- Age 19, listed 6’6″ 245 lbs, bats left, throws right.  Curran was drafted in the 8th round of the 2015 draft out of high school in Agawam, MA.  .179 ISO in the GCL The power upside is enormous, we’ll see how the hit plays.

It’ll be interesting to see if both Curran and Palmeiro come to Delmarva. They could share 1B/DH duties, Curran could also be held back in short season for another year.

3B) There are 2 candidates to return to 3rd base: (Austin Anderson and Ricardo Andujar) but they’re both 24 and the O’s may want to test them at the higher levels.  Alejandro Juvier could be a candidate for the 3rd base job as well as the 2nd base job.

Other candidates for the corner infield positions: Carlos Diaz (1B), Collin Woody (3B, 1B), Kirvin Moesquit (3B, 2B), Frank Crinella (3B, 2B), Tanner Kirk (3B, LF).

 

Outfield

LF) Cole Billingsley- Age 22, listed 5’10” 165 lbs, bats and throws left.  Billingsley was drafted in the 19th round of the 2016 draft out of the Univ of South Alabama.  He handled the bat fairly well in Aberdeen but with a .69 ISO.

CF) Ryan McKenna- Age on opening day 20, listed 5’11” 185 lbs, bats and throws right.  McKenna was drafted in the 4th round of the 2015 draft out of high school in Dover, NH.

RF) Austin Hays

Other candidates for the outfield positions: Natanael Delgado (RF, LF) could be back. Jake Ring (CF), Gerrion Grim (RF, LF), Ademar Rifaela (RF, LF) Jaylen Ferguson (LF, CF, RF), Daniel Franco (LF, CF, RF), Mike Odenwaelder (RF), Markel Jones

 

Starting Pitching

RHP) Cody Sedlock

RHP) Ofelky Peralta

LHP) Keegan Akin

RHP) Matthias Dietz 

RHP) Alex Wells- Age on opening day 20, listed 6’1″ 190 lbs, bats and throws right.  Wells was signed out of Australia in 2015.  He’s starting to find some traction with prospectors Baseball Prospectus recently rated Wells as there 11th prospect in the O’s system.

Steve Melewski of Masn Sports had a Wells write up back in June: http://www.masnsports.com/steve-melewski/2016/06/australian-lefty-alexander-wells-is-off-to-a-good-start-with-aberdeen.html

Other Starting Pitching candidates for Delmarva:  Reid Love, Travis Seabrooke, Lucas Humpal, Layne Bruner, Nick Vespi, Jhon Peluffo, Willie Rios, Alirio Negrette.

 

Good squad overall, the strength will be in the starting pitching, in fact if all of: Sedlock, Peralta, Akin, Dietz and Wells come to the Sally they will likely have one of the league’s best rotations.  I’m also looking forward to seeing the Austin Hays, Ryan McKenna duo.

I enjoyed exploring the Orioles system, they’re better than people think.  Up next is a look at the Greensboro Grasshoppers (Marlins).