There isn’t a team in baseball that showed more improvement on a year-to-year basis than the Baltimore Orioles.
Last season, the O’s looked lost and in the middle of a long rebuild after finishing with a lousy 52-110 record.
We all thought it would be years before they were competitive.
They showed us, however, that they were able to truly compete for a spot on the playoffs the year after that, in 2022.
“After losing 110 games last year, the Orioles will have a winning season for the first time since 2016,” Talkin’ Baseball tweeted.
After losing 110 games last year, the Orioles will have a winning season for the first time since 2016 pic.twitter.com/0FTTKfiZhH
— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) October 2, 2022
That 2016 season featured a playoff appearance for them, the most recent in franchise history.
Since that year, the O’s have been one of the worst teams in the league…until 2022.
That changed this year, as the franchise as a whole looks different.
The Orioles Are Doing Things The Right Way
The Orioles are more diligent, more willing to go to the international free agent market, with a better player development staff, and with some amazing draft picks.
In other words, they have set themselves well for the future by doing things the right way.
They developed some impressive pitching: Spenser Watkins, Keegan Akin, Tyler Wells, Cionel Perez, Dillon Tate, and Felix Bautista all look like MLB impactful arms, and Cedric Mullins, Ryan Mountcastle, Austin Hays, Anthony Santander, Ramon Urias, and the impressive Gunnar Henderson are all legitimately dangerous hitters.
But that’s not all!
The highlight of their season, however, has been Adley Rutschman‘s ascent from promising player to MLB star.
The catcher has an incredible 5.1 Wins Above Replacement (WAR), and looks like an AL Rookie of the Year candidate.
He is slashing .254/.361/.448 with 13 homers, 35 doubles, 70 runs, and some impressive defense behind the plate.
Baltimore is going to be very, very dangerous for a long time.