Since we are only 3 games away from the All-Star break, figured this is a good time to go over some grades for the 2016 O’s. Overall as a team, I would give them a B+. Definitely room for improvement, but you certainly can’t be mad at the position the Birds are in. 49-35, with a 2 game lead over Toronto. They end the first half with 3 against the Angels, and start off the second half with series at Tampa, and at New York. Those 3 teams are a combined 32 games under .500, time to take advantage of this soft schedule.
Hint- A lot of the offensive guys got good grades, a lot of the starters got bad grades. Shocking, I know.
RDT’s First Half Report Card
Matt Wieters- B+ Wieters at the plate has been great this year, the clutch hits, RBIs when the team needs them, the whole package. I know about the TJ surgery, but I’d like to see just a little better defense out of him. Other than that, he’s been very good for the Birds this season.
Caleb Joseph- INC Only playing in 25 games this season, Joseph doesn’t get a grade. He wasn’t getting consistent at-bats due to a healthy Wieters, and then the nut injury came, knocked him out for a month, and he just can’t get anything going. Looks lost at the plate, even before the injury. It’s unfair to give him a failing grade because of the lack of PT, but he’s close to it. Bold statement, Caleb has more RBIs in the second half of the year than he does the first half.
Chris Davis- B-Coming off his big contact, everyone was expecting 2013 Chris Davis, but we knew what we were getting. He hasn’t been great, and he’s had his bad stretches, and right now he’s in a bad stretch. The series in LA was not good for him, 1-13 with 8 Ks. The power numbers are there right now, 21 HR and 56 RBI, but he’s only hitting .235 and has struck out 119 times. He has shown Gold Glove defense in the field this first half though.
Jonathan Schoop- A- We knew Schoop would be good, but we didn’t think it would come this quick. .298/13/50 and is doing his best to make it known he wants a Gold Glove, Schoop has been awesome so far.
J.J. Hardy- C- J.J. did miss some time with his broken foot, but even when healthy, he hasn’t been very productive. He picked it up recently, but it seems like the power is gone. 2 HR, and both those went the shortest distance you could go to hit a bomb. Hopefully we see some old JJ, and he can raise that average up a little.
Manny Machado- A Stud. My first half MVP. Does it all. That’s it.
Ryan Flaherty- C+ Ryan Flaherty is the definition of C+. He isn’t bad, he isn’t good, he’s just “eh”. Didn’t do anything special with Hardy out, but he didn’t let the ship sink. He’s like a 40 degree day.
Pedro Alvarez- D+ I thought we would get more out of Pedro, but looks like I was wrong. Only 9 bombs, 6 of which came in June, a .242 average, and 50 Ks in 53 games. We’ve seen how bad his glove is at times, disappointed in El Toro.
Adam Jones- B+ Jones was slowed by an early injury, but has rebounded and has the numbers we are used to seeing him have. Captain of the team, and is leading the way on and off the field.
Joey Rickard- C+ Rickard has easily outplayed his expectations. I didn’t know what to expect, then he lit the month of April on fire, he has been decent then, but he’s getting the job done against lefties. He’s done a lot more than I ever thought he would here.
Hyun-Soo Kim- B- All he does is hit, .336 right now, the power isn’t there with 3 bombs, but the bat has shown some life lately. He hasn’t been a liability in the field either, but he’s not Tori Hunter. Kim has quickly made everyone eat their words on them wishing he was sent down.
Mark Trumbo- A MLB leader in home runs with 26, Trumbo has been a stud with the bat all year long, and while he isn’t the best fielder, he has shown that he has a cannon for an arm with his 4 outfield assists.
Nolan Reimold- C- Much like Flaherty, Reimold just hasn’t done much. He hasn’t really been needed. Some pinch running spots, and defensive replacement, but hasn’t found consistant playing time with Jim and Rickard platooning in left. I do like what I’m seeing from him during his appearances.
Chris Tillman- A- He was lights out the first 10 starts, then the long balls started flying off of him. Regardless, he has been far and away the best O’s starter and has looked like an Ace at times. He needed a bounce back year in the worst way, looks like he’s back. Hopefully the All-Star break will give that arm some juice.
Ubaldo Jimenez- F Garbage.
Mike Wright- F Water trash.
Tyler Wilson- D Doesn’t look ready to be in the rotation, but due to lack of starters, he has to be up here. I know he’s in Norfolk now, thats to get work during the break, but he hasn’t been good. He nibbles around the zone too much, and just needs to develop more pitches.
Kevin Gausman- C Disappointed in Kevin for this first half. I really thought this was the year he turned it around, showed us his potential, and throws to an ERA under 3.30. He is better than 1-6 and a 4.15 ERA, he needs to prove it in the second half.
Yovani Gallardo- C- Because of the injury, he missed a good chunk of time, but even with him back, he hasn’t been great. Decent, not great. 3-1 with a 6.10 ERA and a WHIP of 1.64. Needs to start going deeper, cut back on the runners, and solidify himself in this rotation.
Zach Britton- A+ He’s great. Top 3 closer in all of baseball, just doesn’t allow home runs and doesn’t blow saves.
Brad Brach- A+ Brad earned the hell out of this A+. I said 2 days ago, he is the most underrated receiver in baseball, and earned this All-Star nod more than anyone. A great guy with crazy numbers, 0.95 ERA, 56 K, .80 WHIP. Insane.
Darren O’Day- B+ Hasn’t been healthy as of late, and that scares me. When he was healthy, he was the same old DOD we know. Only thing that worried me was the HR count, he has already given up the same amount of bombs this season as he did last year. He’ll be back soon, and I expect him to be his normal self.
Dylan Bundy- B+ Bundy looks healthy, his pitches are crisp, changeup is silly, and his fastball has some wild movement. He finally looks comfortable, and knows he has what it takes to be a big league pitcher. Great to see this from Dylan.
Vance Worley- B The Vanimal has been huge this season. Several times he has come in after a starter shits the bed, and he goes 4-5 innings, and clogs the hole. He doesn’t throw the fastest, he’s not the flashiest, but he gets it done when the pressure is on.
Mychal Givens- B- Givens picked up where he left off last year. At times this year he has been awesome, looks un-hittable. A few bad appearances have his ERA up over 3.50, and he has to figure out who to get lefties out, but I like what I’ve seen from him so far.
Odrisamer Despaigne C+ I honestly didn’t know what to expect from him, because I had no clue who he was, but he’s been pretty good at times this season. An ERA under 3, I’d like for him to have a lower WHIP though. I’m not sure what his role is here, or if he has one when O’Day comes back, but it’s been neat to watch him shut some guys down.
T.J McFarland D+ Not very good for T.J. I know he’s a lefty, and that’s probably the only reason he was coming up, but he looked lost up here. Righties hitting .362 off him, lefties hitting .289, McFarland just couldn’t get it done after Matusz was traded.
Buck Showalter- A- He has made some moves this season that make you scratch your head, maybe leaving a bullpen guy in a little longer than we need, but in the end, it always works out. Buck is a top 3 manager in the game so it is hard to criticize him for anything he does.