This piece will simply be about five O’s prospects that you may, or may not have heard of. I’ve seen them all, and while some would be considered long shots to make the majors, I can say that each one at least has that kernel of potential that could lead them to the Big Leagues at some point in their careers. Please keep in mind that while I’ve seen all of these guys in person, it has been difficult to keep track of their progress given the pandemic and the limited information available as of late. Nevertheless, here’re my opinions on a few guys that you might see at Camden Yards at some point in the distant, to not-too-distant future.
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- Alex Wells LHP – Signed out of Australia in 2015 for $300K, Alex turned heads initially with his big curveball and unshakeable demeanor on the mound as an amateur on the international stage. He’s never blown anyone away with major velocity, but he makes up for it with pinpoint command and plus pitchability. His fastball has some arm side movement and he locates it well. His changeup is fairly straight, but is thrown with good armspeed selectively. Many of you may not know this, but Alex has an identical twin brother, Lachlan, in the Minnesota Twins organization who is also a LHP and has a very similar delivery & skillset. Lachlan was also signed for an identical signing bonus.
- Josue Cruz OF – Cruz is an outfielder signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2016 for $80K. He has a tall, lanky frame, which I’m told he’s added weight and strength to since then. He plays best in either corner, with average fielding, arm, and speed tools. He caught the attention of scouts with a very smooth, slightly uppercut swing from the left side. Before the pandemic, he was one of the better hitters on the O’s Dominican Summer League roster. I expect him to be stateside as soon as the lower levels of the Minor Leagues get going again.
- Isaac Bellony OF – Originally from the US Virgin Islands, Bellony was signed out of the Dominican Republic for $220K. The first thing you notice about Bellony is that he’s an above average athlete. A switch hitting outfielder, he’s a touch better from the left hand side, but hits from both sides well enough to remain a switch hitter. He has an average arm and above average speed with the instincts to stick in Center Field.
- Kevin Infante OF/IF – Infante was signed with little fanfare out of the Dominican Republic in 2018 for $175K. He originally hails from Cuba, and was 18 at the age of signing, thus coming at a bit of a discount. He’s played mainly CF, but worked out as an amateur at SS/2B and was more than passable at those positions. He has an average arm and truly well above average speed. He has a solid all around bat from the RH side, showing the potential to have an average hit tool with average power. He’s a versatile player with athleticism that could make him a surprising dark horse prospect.
- Moises Rodriguez 3B/SS – Rodriguez is the longest shot on my list. Signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2018 for $200K, he previously had a deal with the Yankees that fell through for $600K. Marketed like most Dominican infielders as a SS, upon signing he had the quickness and arm to stick at SS, but his strong body suggested that he’d be moving to 3B at some point in his career. He has a smooth swing from the RH side with power to all fields, although he had a slight tendency to get pull happy. He’ll need to continue working on making consistent contact against professional pitching.
Cale Cox is a graduate of Texas State University & Texas A&M University. He has held roles in Scouting, Player Development, & International Operations for the Atlanta Braves & Baltimore Orioles. He lives in Columbia, Maryland with his wife & daughter.