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Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Replacements, replacements, replacements...

The O's have 2 players probably going to the DL, so the question is...Who should replace them? Here is the run-down and my picks.

Newhan:Newhan fractured his right fibula, and will be put on the DL and out for several weeks.

Possible replacements:

*Val Majewski:He is Roch's pick, and a top 10 prospect in the Orioles system. I don't think he would be a good pick, because he would have to play(letting him rot on the bench would be a huge mistake) and he has gotten off to an extremely slow start at Ottawa. I would give him some more time to adapt, since he missed all of last season with a torn labrum.

Luis Terrero:Waived by the D'Backs, the O's claimed him off waivers. He has significant MLB experience, but hasn't really produced in that time. He plays CF, which is a plus for him, but other than a late inning defensive replacement I don't see a point in calling him up. Also, you'd have to make a 40-man roster move to call him up. I'll pass.

Fernando Tatis:He had a solid spring, and his OPS is over 1.000 so far at Ottawa this year. If the O's intend on getting a guy to spell Melvin once or twice and otherwise rot on the bench, this is their guy.

Andy Tracy:I am intrigued by this guy. The O's acquired him from the indians in the offseason, and he has inpressed so far at Ottawa. He can play the corner infield and outfield positions, which gives Perlazzo flexibility on how to use him. He has ton's of power(.513 slg% at Ottawa) and is left-handed(something the O's lack at the corner positions). This would be a good guy to bring up.

Keith Reed:He can play all the outfield positions, has solid speed, and from what I have seen plays solid defense. His OPS at Ottawa is .818, so he is hitting pretty well at the moment. Even if he's called up, I don't see him playing that much, so I wouldn't want him pulled up either.

Raul Chavez:This would be a solid pull-up for the O's. He could use his above-average defense to replace Ramon or Javy late in games, and never sniff the batter's box. I think this would be a good call-up.

Note:Jeff Fiorentino won't be called up due to an ankle injury.

Final decision:The O's can go a couple ways with this. If they want a guy that can play several positions and will produce at the plate, Andy Tracy is the way to go. If they want to go with the third catcher for defensive replacements and so Sam can pinch run for Ramon late in games Chavez is the way to go. All in all, I'd call up Tracy.

Tim Byrdak:After struggling to the first 2 weeks of the season, Byrdak expressed a sore left elbow, and the team is pondering whether to place him on the DL.

Possible replacements:

Scott Rice:He has struggled at Ottawa so far, but he is the Post's pick to join the team, and also Roch's. He is #37 on Orioles Hangout's prospect list, and a former #1 pick. The fact that he is left-handed goes in his favor, and he is a ground ball pitcher(always a good thing). He would be the third rookie in the O's pen. His k/BB ratio is 2/2, which leaves a lot to be desired. A whip over 2 also goes against him, and I think that if he gets called up to the majors he would get thoroughly shelled. Hopefully he can adjust to Ottawa, as his statistics at Bowie last year were not too shabby. His spring ERA was 4.50.

Eddy Rodriguez:After an impressive spring, he has continued his success in Ottawa. He has MLB experience, and I think he would be a solid call-up. The fact that he is right-handed hurts him, as the O's pen lacks lefties. His K/BB ratio is 7/2. Solid. His ERA in the spring was a spectacular 1.35. CALL HIM UP!

Winston Abreu:He is pitching well at Ottawa. He doesn't have any MLB experience as far as I know, so that is a mark against the right-hander. He has an outstanding 12/1 K/BB ratio. At spring training he had more spectacular K number(11.05 per 9 innings), but an ERA over 6 has me turned off.

Final decision:If the O's want a lefty, take Rice. If they want a righty, take Rodriguez. I would rather have Rodriguez, because I think he would be more effective with the big club, but if the O's think a lefty is needed, Rice is the way to go. For some reason I see Rice getting shelled when/if he joins the big club, but we shall see.

* signifies that a player is on the 40-man roster, and the teams doesn't need to make an additional move to add him to the MLB team.

Indians/O's tonight. Jason Johnson facing Bruce Chen at 7:05. This is the start of the 2nd series in a tough 10 game span(4 vs. LAA, 3 vs. Cle., 3 @ NYY). A 3-1 start is huge.

Go O's!

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