10 Orioles Prospects To Watch Beyond The Top 30

The Orioles Top 30 prospects rankings are up now for Baseball America subscribers, with full scouting reports, BA grades and tools grade projections for all 30 players.

Through the process of narrowing the list down to a Top 30, there are other intriguing names who didn’t make the cut but are worth monitoring, with the potential to jump into the Top 30 in the future. Some of those are players who might be in the upper levels and could see big league time this year, though likely in a limited role, while others are lower-level players still in the complex leagues with more upside but plenty of risk.

Beyond the Top 30, these are 10 prospects to watch in Baltimore’s farm system.

Maikol Hernandez, SS. Hernandez signed for $1.2 million in January 2021 as one of the Orioles’ first two seven-figure bonuses ever. He has proven to be an athletic, capable shortstop but has struggled badly at the plate.

Carter Baumler, RHP. Injuries have kept Baumler, who signed as an overslot fifth-round pick in 2020 for $1.5 million, from showing the significant potential the Orioles believe he has. He missed all of 2021 after Tommy John surgery, then made a handful of starts in 2022 before shoulder issues shut his season down. He could have at least two average secondary pitches to go with a fastball that was up to 96 mph pre-surgery.

Braylin Tavera, OF. Tavera’s $1.7 million bonus was a club record when he signed in January 2022. He impressed the Orioles with his swing decisions and showed the potential for five tools in the Dominican Summer League, but he’ll need to add some strength to his frame to realize his offensive potential.

Ryan Watson, RHP. Watson was a senior reliever signed as a nondrafted free agent out of Auburn after the shortened 2020 draft, and the Orioles saw a pitch mix that could play as a starter. He stretched out some in 2021, then struck out over a batter per inning in 107.1 innings between Double-A Bowie and Triple-A Norfolk in 2022, with a low-90s fastball highlighting an average four-pitch mix. His breakout season earned him the Orioles’ Jim Palmer minor league pitcher of the year award.

Aron Estrada, 2B. Estrada was one of the Dominican Summer League’s top performers last year at age 17, with a 1.049 OPS and more walks (29) than strikeouts (23). He has exceptional strike zone control, a line-drive swing and is one of the fastest, most athletic players in the system.

Logan Gillaspie, RHP. Gillaspie signed as a free agent in 2021 and made his major league debut for the Orioles a year later. His fastball averaged 95 mph in the big league bullpen, and he got whiffs with his slider, curveball and changeup as well.

Carter Young, SS. The Vanderbilt shortstop entered 2022 as one of the top players eligible for the draft, but a poor junior season pushed him down draft boards. He was already on campus as a transfer at Louisiana State when the Orioles signed him for $1.325 million on the belief that he can be a big league shortstop and figure out an offensive identity based on his line-drive approach.

Chris Vallimont, RHP. A waiver claim from the Twins, Vallimont has a four-pitch mix highlighted by a hoppy low-to-mid-90s fastball with an effective slider. He made some delivery changes to get back to something more comfortable after he changed organizations and had some success, with the Orioles holding out hope he can be a spot starter while he occupies a 40-man roster spot.

Kade Strowd, RHP. A velocity spike in the bullpen at High-A Aberdeen brought his fastball up to 99 mph, and his secondaries are impressive as well. Those pitches include a mid-80s curveball with depth, a cutter up to 93 mph and a developing slider. He could move quickly toward the majors, even if the Orioles stretch him out in 2023.

Ignacio Feliz, RHP. Feliz, a converted infielder the Orioles took in the minor league Rule 5 draft, has missed bats at an elite level as a pitcher. His fastball gets up to 98 mph, and he pairs it with a shorter mid-80s slider and the ability to pound the strike zone. Feliz needs to work on having his best stuff more consistently to reach his potential. 

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