2022 Baltimore Orioles Top 5 Prospects

2022 Baltimore Orioles Top 5 Prospects

by January 22, 2022 3 comments

The Orioles have been at the bottom of the league for several years. They’ve struggled at the dish and the mound and are turning to their young stars to turn the tables. The O’s are stacked with young talent with five prospects in the top 100. Although, a couple of players recently graduated and dominated in 2021 for the O’s. Ryan Mountcastle and Keegan Akin both made a huge impact on the Orioles in the 2021 season. Now, we will analyze the O’s farm system thoroughly by nominating the top five prospects.

Make sure to check out all of our other Top Prospect Articles.

1. Adley Rutschman, Catcher

Hit: 65
Power: 65
Run: 35
Arm: 60
Field: 65
Overall: 65

Rutschman was grabbed first overall by the O’s back in 2019. The young catcher began his career with the Orioles Rookie Team and quickly made an impression. In just five appearances the switch hitter drove in three RBI with one home run. The Portland native progressed even more and completed his 2019 season with the Low-A Delmarva Shorebirds. After the canceled 2020 season, Rutchsman proved that the Orioles selection was worth the while. In 2021, the number one ranked prospect put on a show. He cranked 18 home runs with a .271 average with the Double-A Bowie Baysox. The youngster was then promoted to Triple-A to accommodate the Norfolk Tides. Down in Virginia, the catcher raked even more with 20 RBI and a career-high .312 average.

The 23-year-old has a ton of pop on both sides of the dish with a cannon behind the plate. Rutschman has proved his potential for the MLB and seeks to make his debut shortly. It seems as Rutschman has a high chance to receive a big workload as starting backstop for the O’s. On the field and off, Rutschman can be a huge asset for Baltimore in 2022. 

ETA: 2022

2. Grayson Rodriguez, Right-Handed Pitcher

Fastball: 65
Curveball: 55
Slider: 60
Changeup: 65
Control: 60
Overall: 60

Ranked number eight on MLB’s Top 100 Prospect list, Rodriguez has a bright future ahead of him. The O’s took Rodriguez in the first round back in the 2018 draft. The right-hander went straight to the Orioles Rookie Team and made nine appearances with 1.40 ERA and 20 strikeouts. In 2019 with the Single-A Delmarva Shorebirds, the youngster was electric. He blew by hitters with a career-high 129 strikeouts. Many were blown away and in 2021, Rodriguez got the call to Double-A. The 22-year old was electric with the Baysox and made his case for MLB potential. The Texas native has some outstanding attributes along with some that need improvement. His fastball blows by hitters topping at 99 miles per hour. His secondary pitch is his changeup which fools hitters thinking fastball. Rodriguez has a curveball, but it needs some work and can be a huge asset to his repertoire. 

Rodriguez has proven to the Orioles that he can contend and is excited to make his debut in 2022. Although, Rodriguez hasn’t experienced the Triple-A level and will most likely bounce around. Rodriguez seems to be an answer to the struggling O’s and could make an instant impact. From his flaming fastball and slicing changeup, Rodriguez has great potential and seeks to improve.

ETA: 2022

3. D.L. Hall, Left-Handed Pitcher

Fastball: 65
Curveball: 60
Slider: 55
Changeup: 55
Control: 50
Overall: 55

The lefty was taken 21st overall by the Orioles in the 2017 draft. Hall had a rough start to his professional career. He went straight to the Orioles Rookie Team in 2017 and held a 6.97 ERA in just 5 games. Luckily, in 2018 with the Single-A Shorebirds, Hall bounced back. He recorded 100 strikeouts with a 2.10 ERA. In 2019, Hall was promoted to the High-A Frederick Keys where he rang up 116 batters with a .189 opponent batting average. After the 2020 canceled season, the Georgia native made his Double-A debut with the Baysox. With the Baysox, the lefty struck out 54 in just seven appearances. Similar to Rodriguez, Hall has a blazing fastball ranging from 96-99 mph. He has a solid changeup along with a curveball and slider to complete his four-pitch arsenal. 

Similar to Rutschman and Rodriguez, Hall has a big chance to make his debut in 2022. His performance throughout his minor league career proves his case for the next level. The O’s have struggled mightily at the pitching slot and could use Hall to turn that around. Whether this season or the next, Orioles fans will see Hall make his debut at Camden Yards.

ETA: 2022

4. Gunnar Henderson, Shortstop/Third Baseman

Hit: 60
Power: 60
Run: 50
Arm: 60
Field: 55
Overall: 55

Drafted by the O’s back in 2019, Henderson is part of the Orioles’ bright future. Starting out with the O’s Rookie Team in 2019, Henderson went to work. He cranked 17 home runs along with a respectable .259 average. In 2021, the 20-year old bounced from Single-A to High-A and Double-A. Henderson made an impact on all three levels and proved why the Orioles drafted him. The Alabama native shined the brightest in his time with the Single-A Shorebirds. He raked in 39 RBI along with eight home runs and a career-high .312 average. The lefty hitter has a ton of pop in his bat along with a strong arm. At the hot corner or shortstop, Henderson is still deciding which position to stick to. 

With Jorge Mateo at short and Kelvin Gutierrez at third, it might be rough for Henderson to find a spot on the diamond. Although, if Henderson keeps progressing he could see the majors in 2023. Henderson has some great attributes to his game and seeks to dominate in Double or Triple-A. Henderson only made five appearances in Double-A but has a chance to see time in Triple-A. 

ETA: 2023

5. Colton Cowser, Outfielder

Hit: 60
Power: 55
Run: 60
Arm: 50
Field: 55
Overall: 55

The 21-year old was recently drafted by the O’s fifth overall in the 2021 draft. Coming out of Sam Houston State, Cowser hasn’t had much time in the minors. After the draft process, the outfielder went directly to the Orioles Rookie Team. There, he put on a show with eight RBI and a .500 average in just seven games. Cowser’s performance promoted him to Single-A to play for the Shorebirds. He proved his potential and drove in 26 RBI with a stellar .347 average. The youngster doesn’t have the greatest power, but he sprays the field with hits along with his quick hands. Cowser is a solid defender but doesn’t have the greatest arm. The Texas native needs much improvement on his power but has time to improve.

Cowser is young and talented but will not see the MLB for a while. With the O’s stacked outfield from Cedric Mullins to Austin Hays and Anthony Santander, Cowser has much to improve in order to contend. Whether it’s his throwing arm or his power at the plate, Cowser needs work. Orioles fans should get to love Cowser and hope that he makes progression towards his MLB debut.

ETA: 2024

What Does the Future Hold?

It seems that the O’s have a bright future to look to. Although, there are some players that didn’t make the top five that are huge assets to the O’s. Shortstop Jordan Westburg and outfielder Heston Kjerstad both have a ton of potential and could be huge assets. As of now, the O’s don’t have the greatest lineup but have much to look forward to.

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