Back in June of 2019, the Baltimore Orioles drafted a young catching phenom that was the signifying moment of an in-depth rebuild.
Since that day, an imaginary clock has been counting down for this first overall draft pick. It was to signify that the rebuild was reaching it’s pinnacle, and from here forward, it would create stability in a franchise longing for a bottom to top flow consistently.
Ladies and gentlemen, that time has just gotten a lot closer. According to MASN’s Roch Kubatko, catcher Adley Rutschman has been promoted to Triple-A Norfolk for what would appear to be the rest of the season, unless he just plays so lights out that the Orioles have to place him on the big league roster. Rutschman was also named the No. 1 prospect in all of baseball this weekend.
To get an idea of the special kind of player the Orioles have on their hands, you could look at just the stats to see that something magical is coming. Through 80 games at Bowie, Rutschman has logged a .271 average and an Orioles-Minor-League-best 18 home runs. You could also look towards his 55 RBI, 16 doubles, or 61 runs scored for the big switch hitter as well, but that doesn’t begin to tell the story.
One of the most amazing stats for Rutschman is that he has struck out 57 times over those 80 games. Of course, you would scratch your head and wonder why I point that out to you, but it’s the fact that he has walked 55 times during that same time frame that should open your eyes.
He is almost at a 1:1 ratio of strikeouts to walks, meaning he is reaching base in 68 percent of the games by walking. Why does this matter? Because, Rutschman also has 80 hits in 80 games, meaning he is on base at a clip that would make leadoff hitters drool.
This isn’t just a fluke, this has been across 117 games total, where he has 75 walks and 113 hits to just 84 strikeouts for an OBP of .392. He is not an easy out and is making it on base with a keen eye and patience at the plate that’s not seen in today’s hitters.
It’s not just his offense that should make you look twice either. “Admiral Adley” has thrown out 35 percent of would be base stealers, while carrying a .992 fielding percentage. Pitchers rave about his game preparation, which includes them on gameday to make sure they are involved and are aware of how the game is going to be called by Rutschman.
From top to bottom, this is a special player; a generational talent that most clubs dream of having that the Orioles have built their hopes and future around. Tomorrow might not be here yet, but today is sure making it seem a little bit sweeter to a fan base waiting for the calendar to turn.
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