There may be no team in the Orioles’ family of affiliates that will be more intriguing this season than the Frederick Keys.
The Orioles’ High-A club in the Carolina League should be where many of the organization’s best prospects start 2017.
The list is bountiful: pitchers Cody Sedlock, Keegan Akin (pictured above), Brian Gonzalez and Ofelky Peralta and hitters Ryan Mountcastle, Jomar Reyes and Austin Hays.
That’s five of the organization’s Top 10 prospects as rated by Baseball America, including Sedlock, the team’s top pick in 2016 out of the University of Illinois.
Adam Pohl, voice of the Double-A Bowie Baysox, has been looking at which minor leaguers will start where in 2017, and this week’s episode of Minor League Podcast focuses on the Keys.
Joining Pohl this week are Keys’ broadcasters Geoff Arnold, the affiliate’s director of broadcasting and public relations, and Kyle Huson, Frederick’s broadcasting and public relations assistant who just happens to be the son of former Orioles’ infielder Jeff Huson.
There’s a whole lot of interesting insight in the podcast about the upcoming Keys’ squad, including Arnold’s take on Reyes, who spent all of last year with Frederick.
Reyes, a third baseman and one of the more highly regarded position prospects in the organization, had a rough year with the Keys, hitting just .228 with 10 homers and 102 strikeouts last year.
But Reyes was the youngest player in the Carolina League last year; he just turned 20 in February. And Arnold believes Reyes will have a better plan at the plate now that he is more experienced, and that should help him improve in 2017.
The rotation at Frederick, led by Sedlock and Akin, could be the most impactful the Keys have had in years. And it could be caught at times by Alex Murphy, the Calvert Hall graduate who grew up not that far from Frederick.
So, for all things Keys, and to get on the 2017 Frederick bandwagon early, check out this podcast.