When you spend a lot of time in and around an organization, you pick up all kinds of useless – but interesting — information. It’s a hazard, and a perk, of the job.
Adam Pohl, the voice of the Double-A Bowie Baysox, is entering his 11th season with the Orioles’ organization, having also called games for the High-A Frederick Keys (2007-13). He’s got plenty of quirky minor league trivia that I’m guessing you don’t know.
Pohl, in this week’s “Minor League Podcast,” connects the dots with the newest minted baseball Hall of Famers – Tim Raines Sr., Ivan Rodriguez and Jeff Bagwell – and the Orioles’ minor league system.
Raines, who played four games with the Orioles in 2001, was never in the organization’s lower levels, but his son was. Tim Jr., spent eight seasons in the organization, making his big-league debut in 2001, when he played briefly with his father. Pohl points out that Raines Jr., had one of the most impressive seasons on the bases in Orioles’ franchise history, stealing 81 bags (out of 100 attempts) for the Frederick Keys in 2000.
Rodriguez didn’t spend much time in the minors, making his big-league debut with the Texas Rangers at age 19 in 1991. Rodriguez made his professional debut, though, at 17 in 1989 with the Gastonia Rangers. His first professional manager was Orlando Gomez, who spent years managing in the Orioles’ system.
Jeff Bagwell’s minor league connection to the O’s minors is a little tenuous, but, again, Pohl has spent a lot of time chronicling the Keys and Baysox. So, he found the link. He knew that Bagwell is the majors’ home run leader from Massachusetts. Bagwell took that crown from Richie Hebner, who once managed the Keys.
In the second part of this podcast, Pohl and Dean Jones Jr., our minor-league reporter, discuss the placement of some of the club’s top prospects, including three top picks from last year that may skip over Low-A Delmarva and end up in Frederick to begin 2017. Pohl and Jones discuss the merits of challenging top picks — such as Cody Sedlock, Keegan Akin (pictured above) and Austin Hays — at higher levels early on in their careers.
Pohl also discusses the return to the organization of Bobby Bundy, the older brother of Orioles’ right-hander, Dylan.
If you want your minor-league fix, give it a listen.