Michael Baumann Makes Adjustments
Righthander Michael Baumann has to regain his health before he can get back on a mound. But a strained flexor mass in his right forearm didn’t keep him off the 40-man roster.
The Orioles exempted the 25-year-old Baumann from the Rule 5 draft by including him among the six players added to the roster at the deadline.
The move had been anticipated after the 6-foot-4, 225-pound Baumann upgraded his prospect status in 2019 by going 7-6, 2.98 in 24 games between high Class A Frederick and Double-A Bowie. He struck out 142 batters in 124 innings.
The coronavirus pandemic limited him to work at the alternate training site this summer.
“We were able to hone in on some things I personally needed to make adjustments for," Baumann said. "Mentally, physically, make steps forward that otherwise I wouldn’t be able to do with the season going on."
“There are definitely some losses there without having the season, but if you have the right mindset, you can take some good out of it.”
Baumann, a 2017 third-rounder from Jacksonville, has registered a 2.82 ERA and 1.12 WHIP a a pro.
“I think everyone should be super excited to see him at the best level,” outfielder Ryan McKenna said. “Most people who have been following him know what he’s capable of. He’s a very dominant presence on the mound. It’s a good thing to be around as a teammate.
“His whole approach to the game is elite. Going forward I think it’s going to be exciting watching him pitch in the big leagues.”
The Orioles are expected to assign Baumann to Triple-A in 2021 and allow the righthander to debut later in the summer. He was scheduled to begin a throwing program in the first or second week of December.
“As far as my arm goes, it’s been feeling good,” he said. “Been making strides there as far as rehab goes. I think there’s been progress there and I’m looking forward to taking more steps forward.”
—The Orioles also protected outfielder Yusniel Diaz, second baseman/third baseman Rylan Bannon, righthander Isaac Mattson and lefthanders Zac Lowther and Alexander Wells. Diaz and Bannon were acquired from the Dodgers in the 2018 Manny Machado trade.
— Among the players left exposed in the Rule 5 draft were righthanders Cody Sedlock and Zach Pop. Sedlock, also unprotected last winter, was the No. 27 pick in the 2016 draft out of Illinois. Pop also was part of the Machado trade and is throwing again after having Tommy John surgery in 2019.