Last night the Baltimore Orioles brass announced Manny Machado would be called up. Drafted 3rd overall by Baltimore in 2010, Machado has been impressing in the minors since his debut.
With a skill set that has drawn comparisons to Alex Rodriguez, there is a definite excitement surrounding Machado. But as is expected, this decision has its naysayers.
Heading into the trade deadline it was made clear by the Orioles that they would not be moving Machado or pitcher Dylan Bundy. These two prospects were deemed too important to trade, possibly ruining big name acquisition for Baltimore.
With this in mind it does seem a bit odd that Machado is being called up. At only 20 years old he is the youngest player to be called up by the Orioles since Hayden Penn in 2005. Typically at this young age players are left to develop in the minors and not rushed into the big leagues.
This season though it seems like that trend may be failing by the way side. With the call up, and success, of Bryce Harper and Mike Trout it has become more acceptable to promote prospects early.
Is Manny Machado going to have the success of those two players? Probably not, but this is a smart move that could help the Orioles into the postseason.
The most inconsistent position on defense so far this season has been 3rd base. Wilson Betemit has the most starts at the position, but hasn’t proven himself capable of holding it down long term.
That’s where Manny comes in. Although he is a shortstop, he can step in and fill a void at 3rd base. He should instantly improve the defense on the field, a definite sore spot for Baltimore this year.
He also adds an elite bat to the weak Baltimore lineup. Having already hit for the cycle in the minors he will come in and help Adam Jones almost instantly.
It’s a smart move for the Orioles. The risks are there but the potential upside is so great that they would be foolish not to give it a try.
Manny Machado will be hopefully starting a long and successful career tonight against the Kansas City Royals.