Pitching wins baseball games – it’s the tale as old as time that remains true, regardless of the changes to the game.
In today’s MLB, you need a plethora of arms that can sling the ball as close to 100 mph as you can, while featuring high spin rate to perfect breaking pitches.
These kinds of traits are both unteachable and also taught as early in development as possible. For some teams, they can go a time without a prospect who not only possesses the natural talent but also the workmanship to further better their trade. We know this very well as Oriole fans.
Speaking currently in July of 2022, the Baltimore Orioles truly have two such prospects. One being right-hander Grayson Rodriguez, who we all know and love. The second is someone who might even have a higher ceiling than Gray-Rod, and that is left-handed gunslinger, D.L. Hall.
This isn’t me telling you about D.L. and how great he is; we already know that. This is to show how that greatness, and more importantly steady improvement, has shown that it is time to add him to the Orioles’ starting rotation.
First off, Hall came into this season following a surgery that ended his 2021 campaign. It is no surprise that he would be on an innings limit this season, and that limit may come sooner than we expect.
After his last outing July 6, Hall has started 14 games and pitched 56 innings. Those 14 starts are already double the amount from 2021.
In terms of avoiding an innings limit, it would make sense for a call-up to come in the very near future. Wouldn’t you rather see 50 innings of Hall figuring out his 100 mph fastball in Baltimore as opposed to repeating the same dominating out in Triple-A?
So far in 2022, Hall has shown why he is among the minor leagues’ top pitching prospects. He has struck out 93 batters in his 56 innings. Yes, 93.
Hall’s ERA is the one thing that disputes this argument, as it does sit at 4.02. A slow start, which is expected after beginning a season following surgery, had Hall at a 6.52 ERA following his start May 20. From that point on until the end of June, Hall was absolutely lights out.
In five starts from May 26 to June 16, Hall struck out 40 batters, gave up just six runs, as he didn’t allow a single home run and lowered his ERA to 3.82.
Good, but still not really showing the truth. However, he dropped that ERA 2.7 points within a five-game span.
His next two starts were catastrophic, mainly due to the fact Hall was unknowingly tipping his pitches. No other way hitters were catching up to 100 mph up and in like they’ve done it before. Either way, these two five-plus-runs-allowed starts raised his ERA once again.
What I mean with improvement is what Hall has done in his two starts since. One of the greatest things to see in a near-ready pitching prospect is the ability to adjust and bounce back.
In Hall’s two starts in July, he has struck out 20 batters, while only walking three. He’s given up just one run and pitched 10 innings.
His six-inning outing July 6 was his season-long, and his 98 pitches proved he can be stretched out, while also netting a career-high 14 strikeouts.
Why not have him test that filthy stuff in Camden Yards on a three to four-inning leash, not much different than what Hyde is already doing with Austin Voth?
If you take out Hall’s two bad starts at the end of June and count his other 10 starts with Norfolk, opponents are hitting just .204 against him. He has also struck out 76 batters in that 10-game span, and jn the game July 6, he caused 35 swings and misses, simply incredible.
Hall has time and time again shown he can adjust and improve. If you watch him pitch, you can easily see he has the stuff to fool even the best major league hitters.
There is a reason he is the 67th overall prospect, according to MLB.com. I think, with the Orioles’ staff running thin on a team that is a lot closer to competing than not, they need the boost with Hall getting the call.
Whenever he does, the stadium will be packed to welcome the flame-throwing left-hander. And it may be sooner rather than later.
When do you think Hall should make his big league debut? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to follow The Baltimore Battery on Facebook and Twitter! And make sure to use the hashtag #baltimorebattery when sharing our content to show your Birdland swag!
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