Last night, the news broke that Manny Machado, one of the Baltimore Orioles top prospects, is getting brought up to play for the Orioles. Machado is a 20-year-old infield prospect that has been compared to Alex Rodriguez. This is a huge surprise and brings major excitement to the Orioles who are already riding a five-game winning streak. Machado will play third base for the Orioles, after only starting two games their in his professional career.
Some may think the Orioles are pushing Machado too quickly. Machado’s stats are not shiny with a .266 batting average with 11 home runs, but he also has 48 walks so that means he is probably getting pitched around. The Orioles probably did not think it was necessary for Machado to play in AAA, a lot of AAA players are failed Major League players. The Norfolk Tides roster is cramped with guys with major league experience and obviously thought it was not necessary for him to play there.
The last Orioles player to get promoted without playing at the AAA level was Brian Matusz. It was a little different situation because Matusz was a “polished” college pitcher and fit in pretty well when he first got to the Orioles.
Machado has reported been practicing at third base and is considered a good defender. Robert Andino is probably the Orioles best defensive third baseman but he lacks the power bat that Machado has. Andino is valuable player for the Orioles, he can play every position well and has good at bats. Andino was the only Orioles player to have good at bats against Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price. Wilson Betemit has been falling off with his bat and defensively and could use a good benching.
I wonder what Machado will bring for the Orioles. I for one was shocked when I heard the news. It is nice to see the Orioles brass making a push while not giving up their future. Machado will be part of the Orioles future and was one of the reasons the Orioles did not make a move just to make a move at the non-waiver trade deadline.