Orioles 2017 Season Preview
Ready to check out our 2017 Baltimore Orioles predictions? Say what you want about the Baltimore Orioles, but they are going to do things their way, which tends to have an uncanny ability to stay competitive – even when “experts” think it is time to blow things up in the Chesapeake area.
MLB Orioles Predictions & Handicapping Insight
We know the O’s are going to hit their home runs and strike out opposing batters in the ninth inning.
The question is, can they execute the other facets of the game well enough to remain within a shout of the division?
Manager Buck Showalter is a well-respected veteran in the business, principally because he does a great job of keeping Baltimore competitive, with behemoths like Boston, New York and the upstart Toronto in the AL East.
2017 MLB Team Previews – Baltimore Orioles
- American League East +750
- American League +1800
- World Series +3300
- OF Seth Smith
- C Welington Castillo
- RP Logan Verrett
Seth Smith will never be the centerpiece of your lineup, but he has made a respectable career thanks to his versatility.
Eli Manning’s former backup QB at Ole Miss has built a stable baseball career, playing for Colorado, Oakland and now the O’s.
Castillo, the Dominican Republic’s starting catcher in the World Baseball Classic, will keep the position warm until super-prospect Chance Sisco is ready.
Texas native Logan Verrett is little more than a warm body in the bullpen.
He had an underwhelming season for the Mets in 2016. He’ll need to improve on an ERA just north of five (5.20).
- C Matt Wieters
- 3B Pedro Alvarez
- 1B/DH Steve Pearce
- P Yovani Gallardo
Matt Wieters has been a foundational piece of this team over the past several seasons, but the homegrown pick never developed quite like some predicted he would.
He never reached the ceiling that many set for him as a prospect out of Georgia Tech. Alvarez is a feared slugger when he makes solid contact, which isn’t often.
Pearce is a reliable on-base/multi-purpose guy that a clubhouse can always use. His presence will likely be missed. The starting rotation will also be moving on from Mexican Gallardo in 2017.
Orioles Predictions: Projected Lineup:
- OF Hyun Soo Kim
- OF Adam Jones
- 3B Manny Machado
- 1B Chris Davis
- DH Mark Trumbo
- OF Seth Smith
- 2B Jonathan Schoop
- C Welington Castillo
- SS J.J. Hardy
The heart of Baltimore’s order has oodles of power, exaggerated by the hitter-friendly confines of its home park, Camden Yards.
The O’s feature a couple of fantastic all-around franchise players in Jones and 3B wunderkind Machado, although Jones had a down year by his standards in 2016.
He took a long time for his bat to heat up last season. If Jones turns back the clock for a vintage season, the O’s lineup gets that much scarier.
Davis and Trumbo will hit tons of dingers, but will strike out just as much.
Baltimore could use another good season out of Dutch Antilles product Schoop. Table-setter Hyun Soo Kim is an excellent on-base guy, while at the bottom of the order, SS Hardy is nearing the end of the line.
Orioles Predictions: Projected Rotation:
- RH Kevin Gausman
- RH Dylan Bundy
- LH Wade Miley
- RH Ubaldo Jimenez
- RH Mike Wright
With usual staff ace Chris Tillman currently injured, Baltimore’s rotation will be relying heavily on young arms taking the next step. Gausman has been making headway, and there will be plenty on the 24-year old shoulders of righty Dylan Bundy.
He pitched only 109 innings in 2016, so hopefully his ligaments are ready to perform with a heartier workload.
Southpaw Miley will split up Jimenez and Mike Wright. Jimenez has been a reliable starting pitcher, even if he, similarly to Wieters behind the plate, never lived up to promise it seemed like he had when he was fanning batters left and right when he pitched for the Rockies.
Orioles Predictions: Projected Closer:
- RH Zach Britton
Baltimore’s flamethrowing closer joins Mychal Givens, Brad Brach, Oliver Drake and Darren O’Day to make a fantastic back end of the bullpen. All these guys can strike out batters and when the O’s go into the latter innings with a lead, it’s generally in good hands.
Britton took the next step when he was transitioned from being a starter to being a bullpen guy. Givens was a contributor for Team USA in this year’s World Baseball Classic; he’s certainly a star on the rise.
Another reliever, Vidal Nuno, has showcased a respectable WHIP (1.27 last year) but he needs to chip away at his ERA, to get it below four. Improvement from his just further bolsters a team strength.
2017 Baltimore Orioles Prediction: 82-80, 4th in AL East
Baltimore will undoubtedly continue to be a thorn in plenty of teams’ sides, but the lack of a dynamic starting five and the rather one-dimensional offensive gameplan is likely enough to keep the Orioles out of the thick of the pennant race.
There will still be some bitterly fought contests in the division, especially against hated Jose Bautista and the Blue Jays, but anticipate Baltimore coming out on the short end of things more often than not.
The Orioles could still scrap with New York for third in the division, and hey, you still have to play the games.
What do you think of our 2017 Baltimore Orioles predictions? Comments are welcome below.
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