Diner Question: Besides Bundy, Cobb, Cashner, who should start for 2019 Orioles? - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Dubroff’s Diner

Diner Question: Besides Bundy, Cobb, Cashner, who should start for 2019 Orioles?

With the temperature scorching, why not stop into Dubroff’s Diner? While you’re here, you can cool off with some ice cream and hot talk about the Orioles’ starting pitching.

Josh Rogers was the 11th starter used by the Orioles this season. Two of the 11, Kevin Gausman and Chris Tillman, are gone. The others — Dylan Bundy, Andrew Cashner, Miguel Castro, Alex Cobb, David Hess, Yefry Ramirez, Mike Wright and Jimmy Yacabonis — are still with the organization, though Yacabonis is at Triple-A Norfolk.

Manager Buck Showalter said that the left-handed Rogers, who made his major league debut on Tuesday, will get another start but may not get more than that because the Orioles don’t want him to exceed a predetermined number of innings.

Others, including Luis Ortiz, could be called up from Norfolk to start for the Orioles in September.

Cashner has a year left on his contract, Cobb has three, and the others are under club control.

It’s unlikely that the Orioles will spend free-agent dollars on another starting pitcher.

This Week’s Diner Question: Assuming Bundy, Cashner and Cobb return next year, how would you fill out the Orioles’ starting rotation for 2019?

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB





  1. Boog Robinson Robinson

    August 30, 2018 at 7:26 am

    Tough question Mr. Dubroff … how’s about a stack of those virtual Johnny Cakes, a lb. of bacon, and a big cup of cofee, before composing my answer?

    My 1st thought is if a 3 man rotation is possible?

    My 2nd thought is about converting Crush Davis into a starting pitcher, if for no other reason, simply to keep him out of the lineup.

    My 3rd thought is that since free agent money is probably not likely … that along with continuing the development of Yefry Ramirez & David Hess … the O’s are going to have to take some long hard looks, and possibly rush up some of the younger farmhands like Blaine Knight, Louis Ortiz & Kremer.

    All those thoughts combined … looks like a metaphorical strikeout to me. I’m afraid that we’re in for a couple of tough years boys.

    • Ekim

      August 30, 2018 at 12:46 pm

      Hey Boog! You stole my idea about Davis!

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 12:55 pm

      Boog, I hope your enjoying your pancakes, bacon and coffee. Because you’re such an avid reader, it’s on the house.

      I think Blaine Knight is probably a couple of years away. More likely, Keegan Akin, Brian Gonzalez and Michael Baumann get a look first.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 30, 2018 at 1:08 pm

        Hey, you can’t beat free bacon!

    • Mau

      August 30, 2018 at 7:02 pm

      Davis may yet reach the Mendoza line. He has been much better since his timeout before all the movement.

  2. bigdaddydk

    August 30, 2018 at 8:09 am

    At the moment, allowing for some younger guys to develop, I’d look at Rogers (to have a lefty) and Hess. Hess, although not spectacular, has shown flashes of being serviceable at the least, so perhaps as a #5. Cobb, Cashner, Bundy, Rogers, and Hess wouldn’t scare a lot of teams, but it could be decent. I suspect a full spring training will help both Cobb and Cashner, and I hope Bundy gets over the malaise that has plagued the post-Atlanta ankle twisting part of the season. I’d expect a steady rotation of arms from Norfolk to fill in though, including Mr. 26th Man Yakabonis.

    • Ekim

      August 30, 2018 at 12:53 pm

      For any of them to have a chance at success they HAVE to s__t can McDowell! Every time they bring another kid up from the minors I pray they don’t buy into his crap. The O’s pitchers, old and new, have one sorry record since he arrived. He’s just bad news recycled from Atlanta. Just look at what Gausman has done since he escaped. Just sayin…

      • Rich Dubroff

        August 30, 2018 at 12:56 pm

        Ekim, I had no idea you felt this way about Roger McDowell!

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 12:57 pm

      I wouldn’t bet against you, bigdaddy.

  3. DauerPower

    August 30, 2018 at 8:10 am

    Cobb/Bundy/Cashner/Hess/Norfolk Shuttle

    I think we need to get back to focusing on defense and bullpen to make the rebuild less painful and allow the pitchers to build confidence and breed success.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 12:58 pm

      The bullpen is another interesting issue we’re going to be tackling here over the rest of the season, Dauer.

  4. TxBirdFan

    August 30, 2018 at 8:57 am

    The options are not good (except for Boog’s lb of bacon!), and starting the year with the Norfolk shuttle already warming up will be like waving the white flag. What’s the possibility of bringing back some of the fire sale, like Gausman and Britton, and converting Britton back into the starter he once was?

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:00 pm

      Tx, Gausman was traded and has two more years before free agency. I think Britton will make some good money as a free agent because closers are valuable, and with a full spring training, he’ll likely be more effective. The ship has sailed for both Gausman and Britton.

  5. Bancells Moustache

    August 30, 2018 at 9:18 am

    2 guys who are Major League starters, one who the jury is still out on (sorry Dylan, put the big boy pants on already) and a revolving door. Hess looks like he could give you some innings, nobody else appears to be ready at present. So next year it’s not a who’s who of pitching prospects so much as a who’s he? My only hope is that the team doesn’t hurry along its better young arms and lets them learn. I can accept bad baseball in 2019. I won’t accept no signs of improvement in 2020.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:01 pm

      Bancells, good to hear from you. I think you make some valid points. I think there will be many starting pitchers, and who they start with isn’t likely to be who they end with.

  6. garyintheloo

    August 30, 2018 at 9:30 am

    I am willing to move on from Bundy at this point and it seems the rest of the options in-house are 4A types. Buy your seats in the outfield stands next year ’cause it will be Souvenir City.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:02 pm

      gary, I think trading Bundy at this point would be selling low. I wouldn’t do it.

  7. afterp

    August 30, 2018 at 9:42 am

    We seem to have a greater abundance of arms that are better prepared to go 1-2 innings. We should adopt the Tampa style of using “openers” to face the fresh top of the order and then bring in longer, stretched out pitchers before the lineup gets to see those pitchers a second time around. With multi-position versatility by Mancini, Villar, Beckham and others, we could go with as many as a 13-man staff. Just don’t keep doing the same thing if it isn’t working.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:04 pm

      In order to do the opener thing, afterp, you need a bullpen that can be optioned, and most of the guys the Orioles have can indeed be optioned. I would see them with a three-man bench and 13 pitchers going forward.

  8. BARay

    August 30, 2018 at 9:51 am

    O’s starting pitching will not improve until the defense improves. Cy Young would struggle to get outs with this defense. I say improve the defense and bolster the bullpen. Then we can assess this group.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:05 pm

      Interesting points you raise, BARay.

  9. garyintheloo

    August 30, 2018 at 10:10 am

    Something off the menu. I read yesterday that Richard Rodriguez was having a nice season in the Pirate’s bullpen. When he pitched at Norfolk last season several players who went through there recommended the Os bring him up which the finally did during the September free-fall and then let him go. Anyone know why? He certainly wasn’t holding anyone back.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:08 pm

      Right you are, Gary. Richard Rodriguez is having a fine season for the Pirates. The Orioles were unimpressed with him after five bad outings. They outrighted him when they brought up Tanner Scott for a look late last season.


    August 30, 2018 at 10:23 am

    1) Bundy
    2) Cobb
    3) Cash
    4) Hess?
    5) Rogers?
    Alts) Yefrey, Castro, Means, Yac, Ortiz
    Long shots) Kremer, Akin, Harvey, Wright Jr, Tate

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:09 pm

      You me see all of them next year, Cash. Maybe Kremer, Akin and Tate later in the season.

  11. Orial

    August 30, 2018 at 10:35 am

    Cashner,Cobb. Yes that’s it. They really should look to trade Bundy but a fear of Arrietta/Gausman looms over them so doubt that would happen. It’ll be a crap-shoot in spring training to fill the other holes. 2018 was a “bad rock bottom”,2019 will be a brightening “rock bottom”. The arms to get excited about I feel won’t start showing up till 2020(Rodriguez,Hall,Akins,Tate). Final note–again I say “someone please pick Alex Cobb’s head he came from Tampa Bay”.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:13 pm

      Orial, some valid points here. Interestingly I think there are a number of arms, more than many realize, and I think it will be fascinating to see who is able to stick.

  12. Chewy

    August 30, 2018 at 10:53 am

    Will need to sign a couple of free agents to fill out the rotation. I’d mainly look for younger-ish free agents that can be bought low, but have potential to breakout. I would also look internationally in Japan and S. Korea to see if we can find someone there. Lastly, if available, I would consider getting one serviceable veteran starter who may be past his prime but has leadership qualities that can act somewhat as another pitching coach. The ideal goal would be that one of the new starters will show signs of breaking out, while another starter can be flipped in July for prospects. Flipping a starter will also allow the prospect that is ready in July to be called up. Don’t rush the kids in the minors. Some of them need to be on the 40-man roster, but not all need to be on the 25-man roster. Some can be long relievers in the bullpen or spot starters.

    • Orial

      August 30, 2018 at 11:07 am

      Cobb should be that “other” pitchiing coach. He came through the Mecca of pitching–Tampa Bay.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:11 pm

      Chewy, some interesting thoughts, but I think any free agent starters will be reclamation projects.

  13. Ekim

    August 30, 2018 at 1:02 pm

    Reality… there’s not much in the ‘cupboard’. There’s an old saying… “Throw enough pies against the wall and finally one will stick… “ That’s about it for the O’s until some of the real kids (low 20’s) down in A ball mature… possibly 2020 or 2021. If you think attendance is bad now just wait until next year!

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 1:15 pm

      It will be interesting to see what crowds will be like next year. It usually takes a while for fans to realize that a team is trending down and fans also don’t realize when a team is starting to turn up.

  14. Fareastern89

    August 30, 2018 at 2:13 pm

    Hess, Rogers, Yefry and/or Yacabonis to start the season, then see if any of the prospects seem ready to make the jump after some more development time. Last thing you want to do is rush people to the majors and damage their confidence. Next year’s won-lost record at the major league level is irrelevant. Give the kids a chance to hone their skills on the farm.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 3:22 pm

      I think these are some valid points, Fareastern.

      • Fareastern89

        August 30, 2018 at 3:40 pm

        Having said that, though, I am curious to see how Ortiz will fare in the majors. He seems to be the closest of the higher-ceiling prospects we obtained in the mid-season trades. I watched one of his starts on television and he has a pretty intimidating presence on the mound. Do you know, Rich, why the O’s have been reluctant to promote Means?

        • Rich Dubroff

          August 30, 2018 at 9:38 pm

          Fareastern, other pitchers are considered to be more skilled than he is. He had to return to Bowie this year, and didn’t do well, and only at Norfolk did he start to show better. He has given up more than a hit an inning there, which isn’t a good indicator. If he continues to pitch well, he’ll get a chance.

  15. Grand Strand Bird Fan

    August 30, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    I don’t see the Orioles moving Cobb, Bundy, or Cashner now or in the offseason. If Hess continues to pitch effectively for the remainder of the season he will likely be the fourth starter. He has greatly improved after a rough stretch. Dean Kremer has pitched very well with a low WHIP and a lot of strikeouts. He should have a shot along with others that have been mentioned. However, I don’t see Mike Wright with the team either as a starter or reliever. The Orioles have younger and better options at both of those positions.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 9:39 pm

      Nice summary, Grand Strand.

  16. boss61

    August 30, 2018 at 6:41 pm

    Wow this is though. Tougher than it should be, which does not bode well.

    Rogers and Wright. I don’t love either answer.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 30, 2018 at 9:40 pm

      Boss, if the questions were easy, that wouldn’t challenge our astute readers.

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