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The Orioles Are All In On Their Rebuild. Trade Kevin Gausman And Darren O'Day To The Braves, And Jonathan Schoop To The Brewers.

What a day for the Orioles and their fanbase, a weird day. We knew for a while that the Orioles would likely be moving some pieces and focus on the future. Dan Duquette mentioned during the Machado press conference that the team would be rebuilding and they want to get younger and lower payroll. That happened today.

A few weeks back they moved Manny Machado to the Dodgers for 5 guys, last week they traded Zach Britton for 3 players, on Sunday they traded Brad Brach for international signing bonus money, and today was another big moment in the rebuild. The Orioles traded Kevin Gausman and Darren O’Day to the Atlanta Braves for 4 prospects and more international money. They were not done after that trade though, they traded Jonathan Schoop to the Brewers for 3 prospects. When the dust settled, the Orioles ended up with 15 guys, 14 of them will be in the minors, and a decent amount of International Signing Bonus money.  Most of these guys won’t be MLB ready for 2-3 years, but again, this is all about setting up for the future.

Dan said they were going to rip down the house and rebuild, and that is what he did. Props to him for actually going through with it, because I honestly didn’t think it would happen. Does it suck? Yeah. Does it improve the club going forward? Yes. They saved a ton of money, about $35 million from the trades they made at the deadline, and they added 14 guys to an improved farm system. It will take a few years, but I think this will prove to be a key day in Orioles history. It sucks losing guys we’ve watched over the years like Gausman, O’Day, and Schoop, but it was clear they weren’t coming back once their deals were up. Midas whale ship them out now when they have years of team control left and we don’t do this Machado dog and pony show again. These last 2 weeks show that the club is in the hands of the Angelos boys, it’s a new day in Baltimore.

Kevin Gausman and Darren O’Day to the Atlanta Braves 

This deal came as a bit of a surprise. Gausman’s name had been tossed out there in recent days, but I didn’t think it would reach a trade. Today it did. Gausman and O’Day head to the Braves for 4 prospects, plus international signing bonus slot money. Here’s a rundown of the guys they got from Atlanta.

4 guys and the international money for Gausman and a hurt, aging O’day seems kind of underwhelming. The Braves have one of the top farm systems in all of baseball, it kind of feels like they should have gotten more.

Phillips has been at Triple-A Gwinnett and has made 31 appearances out of the bullpen and pitched to a 1.99 ERA, 59 Ks, a 1.03 WHIP, and only 1 HR in 40 and 2/3 innings. A nice bullpen arm, but that seems to be his ceiling. Zimmerman has made 20 starts in-between Single-A and Double-A and has a 9-4 record with an ERA of 2.86. He’s only given up 8 homers in his 20 starts and has a WHIP of 1.20 and has 125 Ks. Will be interesting to see how he progresses through the Orioles system.

Cumberland is a young catcher who seems to have some pop and can get on base via the walk. Between Single-A and Double-A this season, Cumberland is batting .228, has an OBP of .357, 11 homers, 15 doubles, and 39 RBIs. Now he has only played 5 games with Double-A, and it struggling there, but that is to be expected when you get promoted. He was the Braves 30th ranked prospects. Jean Carlos Encarnacion is a young infielder with a decent amount of potential. He’s been at Single-A for the Braves and hit .288, an OBP of .314, 23 doubles, 5 triples, 10 homers, and 57 RBI. He needs to work on drawing walks, only 13 in over 100 games, not great! Add in the $2.5 million in international money which will need to go to Victor Victor Mesa if he signs here, and it seems like a decent deal.

It does suck that Kevin Gausman never reached his potential here, he was a young stud throwing HEAT, but just couldn’t put together a complete season. It seems like he would start off bad, finish strong. Or he’d do the opposite. He is one of those change of scenery guys. He’s still only 27 and this season had a 5-8 record with a 4.43 ERA, a 1.379 WHIP, with 104 Ks in his 21 starts. He has all the potential in the world, a smoking hot wife, and I hope he wins a Cy Young soon. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the Braves (Dave Wallace and Dom Chiti used to be in the Orioles orginization, are now in Atlanta) tinker with his delivery a bit, or move him on the mound. Looking at Jake Arrieta 2.0, folks. This is the guy I thought they’d hold onto because he is a young, homegrown talent that is still under team control, he’s not a free agent until after 2020. But that also is why teams would be willing to trade prospects for him. They have time to get him right. Looking forward to keeping an eye on Kevin and the rest of his career.

Darren O’Day was a key member of the bullpen and clubhouse. Just an all-around great guy who was an AWESOME piece out of the pen. The sidewinder came to Baltimore in 2012 and helped lead the team to the playoffs 3 times in 5 years. He is the leader out there and I’m sure passed a lot of his knowledge onto the young guys. On the field he was a bull. A guy you wanted up in the 8th to get you out of that jam. I can’t tell you how many times I saw him come in with the bases loaded and 0 outs, only to K the side. He’s 35, and has been hurt more often than not recently. Couple that with his salary and expiring contract at the end of next year, and the Orioles are lucky they could unload O’Day. He only appeared in 20 games this season before undergoing season ending surgery on his hamstring.

From 2012 to 2016 he was arguably one of the top relievers in the game, and for those 4 years he averaged a WHIP of 0.939, an ERA of 1.92, racked up a record of 23-8, had 12 saves, and averaged 9.7 Ks per 9. Again, recently he has been hurt, but was still a guy you wanted on your team. He’s been great in the community, and I’d even see him around some of the local BBQ joints, will be sad to see him go.

Jonathan Schoop to the Brewers 

This deal came down right before the 4:00 o’clock deadline, so late that Schoop’s name was already printed on the lineup card for tonight’s game. According to the Orioles announcer, Gary Thorne, he saw Schoop walk into the locker room and then walk out with his phone and said “uh oh”. That was the trade. Schoop is injected right into a playoff chase with the Brewers and will likely slide over to shortstop since the Brewers just traded for Mike Moustakas and moved Travis Shaw to second. He’s a free agent after next season, so that is why the Brewers were more willing to part with some of their prospects, and maybe they move him to third when Moose leaves next year, or they move Shaw back to third and Schoop goes back to second.

This one hurts, much like Manny, watching Schoop grow from a skinny little kid, into a ball of muscle who can throw BBs around the diamond and hit tons of bombs, I hope nothing but the best for him going forward. An NLCS matchup between he and his best friend, Machado, would be fantastic. The Brewers and Dodgers are playing tonight and tomorrow as well. Reunited at last.

The return back for Schoop isn’t bad. Let’s look at who the Brewers sent back.

Luiz Ortiz was a first round pick of the Rangers in 2014, and looks like a house. I mean that dude is Bartolo 2.0. At Double-A he has a 3-4 record with an ERA of 3.71, a WHIP of 1.19 and 65 Ks in 68 innings. He was the 7th ranked prospect in the Brewers organization, and is yet another young arm that gets thrown down to the farm for the Orioles. Jean Carmona, a shortstop, was the Brewers 14th ranked prospect but hasn’t had the best year at the dish. He’s young as shit, only 18 years old so he’ll grow into his body and add on muscle. In 39 games in Rookie Ball, Carmona is batting .239, with 3 doubles, 4 homers, and a .298 OBP. He’s not expected to contribute anything for a while.

The last piece was Jonathan Villar, a proven major leaguer who plays all over the infield, but will likely slide into the second base spot once he’s off the DL. Villar is under team control until 2020, so he isn’t gone anytime soon. He doesn’t have much pop, only a career high of 19 homers a few years back, but man can he run. In 2016 he stole 62 bases, I honestly don’t think the Orioles have stolen 62 bases since 2014. If he can be a guy who can play decent defense, get on base, and steal a bag or 2, I’ll be okay with that. He’s the only guy the Orioles got from today’s trades that will report to the big league club.

This will be a tough end to the season, you’ve got veterans gone, young guys up, and they’re going to lose over 100 games. These trades are all about the future and building up the team for then. The international money needs to all go to Victor Victor, and if that happens, that will be bigger than any of these trades. It’s tough to watch the team crumble like this, but it’s necessary. Duquette mentioned tearing down the entire house instead of redoing every room, that is what they did. This full rebuild is on.