Elias talks about Mountcastle and adding other prospects; Orioles add Mason Williams, subtract Dwight Smith Jr. - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Elias talks about Mountcastle and adding other prospects; Orioles add Mason Williams, subtract Dwight Smith Jr.

Photo Credit: Joy. R. Absalon

A day after the Orioles promoted one of their top prospects, outfielder/first baseman Ryan Mountcastle, they continued to make roster moves.

On Saturday they designated Dwight Smith Jr. for assignment and selected the contract of outfielder Mason Williams, 29, from the Bowie alternate site.

Smith, who hit .222 with two home runs and six RBIs in 21 games, joined the Orioles on March 8, 2019 when Toronto traded him for international bonus slot money. He had a slow start to the season after testing positive for Covid-19 when he reported in early July and played in none of the three exhibition games.

Executive vice president/general manager Mike Elias said that the move was intended to stabilize the roster because of injuries to centerfielder Austin Hays (fractured rib) and shortstop José Iglesias (sore quadriceps muscle).

“Having Mason with the team along with Ryan Mountcastle will give us a versatile defensive option,” Elias said in a video conference call on Saturday. “Can play a legit center field and a left-handed bat off the bench.

“Dwight Smith is somebody we have a lot of affection for and has had some really good runs since joining the organization last spring training. There’s a lot of promise in his bat and, selfishly, we hope he’ll remain with the organization after this designation period.”

The Orioles have 58 players in their 60-man player pool.

Elias said that Mountcastle needed to work on his defense in left field before coming to the majors.

“We wanted him to be the type of guy that when he gets promoted to the big leagues, he’s here to stay,” Elias said. “We wanted to make sure that we gave him a good chance of that being the case. It may be the case. We hope it’s the case. It may not. If not, it’s not the end of the world. We always hope for that when you bring up a player of his caliber, he’s able to stay put.


“We wanted him to get as many repetitions as we can in left field … With the lack of a minor league season this year, it made for a very strange calculus. We wanted him to work on the offensive development goals [better plate discipline] we had for him this year, but there were no real games to be played and, at some point, it’s in his best interests to go see some other uniforms. We felt this was the time for that. We understand and expect that he’s still developing. He’s still one of the youngest players [23] in the big leagues now. There’s going to be ups and downs …

“We feel he’s in a decent enough spot in terms of his comfort in left field to at least survive out there right now. He might surprise us. He’s a good athlete, he’s a good baseball player. Getting the real in-game repetitions will be great for him. He performed well at Bowie. He walked a lot more than he struck out.”

Elias said the Orioles could add additional prospects.

“Any of the guys that are at Bowie right now that are upper-level, Double-A, Triple-A guys, they all have a chance to get called up this year.”

Left-hander Keegan Akin was with the team for a week earlier this month and made his major league debut out of the bullpen. Elias expects him to return, but he isn’t sure in what role. He’s viewed as a potential starting pitcher in the long term.

Dean Kremer, who pitched with Bowie and Norfolk last year, is another possibility.

“Kremer’s knocking on the door, too,” Elias said. “He’s throwing well at the alternate site. He had a really minor groin thing that slowed him down, and he’s still kind of building back up. I just saw him [Friday]. He threw four innings and looked good. We could see him, but we just have to see how things go.

“Any of those guys that played at Bowie last year or played a good chunk at Bowie last year or higher need to be ready,” Elias said. “Those guys on the upper levels, they’re all on our radar screen.”

The trade deadline is August 31st.

“It could be that nothing happens,” Elias said. “It could be that we make three or four trades. I don’t know yet. We’re certainly talking and working on it.

“We’re still listening on players that are on our major league roster if it makes sense for our future and next year and the broader picture. We’re not extra motivated to do anything.”

Elias said there has been no talk about shutting down first baseman Chris Davis, who was placed on the 10-day injured list Friday with a left knee injury. Davis is hitting .122 and has become a part-time player for the Orioles.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB



  1. Shamus

    August 22, 2020 at 4:38 pm

    Nobody wants Davis… Os stuck with him… if they stay in the hunt in this crazy season, maybe they release him due to the fact his slot could be filled by somebody who can help the team and gain experience. Otherwise put him in lineup once a week or a late inning replacement. How long do we have him for?

  2. Shamus

    August 22, 2020 at 4:43 pm

    Also, I never saw Dwight Smith in the future plans anyway.Next man up

  3. Bman

    August 22, 2020 at 4:58 pm

    I think they stick to the plan and trade Givens and Cobb. Maybe a Milone, Sulser, Wojo, etc.. the “old” guys who won’t be here for the next run.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 22, 2020 at 5:01 pm

      We own Cobb for another season. If you’d like to have a competitive team next year (and even if you don’t), I see no good reason to trade him unless somebody blows you away with a deal you can’t refuse. Frankly I don’t see that happening.

    • CalsPals

      August 22, 2020 at 5:21 pm

      I’ll second that, I really don’t think they’ll trade Cobb, needs to be a crazy good offer, & again, don’t see that happening…go O’s…

  4. Boog Robinson Robinson

    August 22, 2020 at 4:59 pm

    Thank you Mr. Elias. The wheels are finally turning. Not to be the perpetual sceptic, but I”m wondering how much and in what ways has this Covid season altered our GM’s decision making. Certainly the lack of a minor league season threw some major monkey wrenches into his plans. I’d love to hear him address that in depth.

    SO now … I’m waiting for Bhoff’s post concerning the promotion of Mason Williams!! Should be good.

    • Bhoffman1

      August 22, 2020 at 5:55 pm

      I already posted it you missed it but I did open my champagne to toast Mullins first RBI likes promised.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 22, 2020 at 6:39 pm

        I can’t find that anywhere?

    • Bhoffman1

      August 22, 2020 at 7:56 pm

      Last blog. I said it made my day. Once Hays is back I don’t know if he stays but I hope they give him a fair shot whatever his role might be. As for Sisco both he and Severino are making a formidable pair. My point don’t need to start Holaday today. Sisco should be DH , I don’t know if he can play first base but it’s a good idea to teach him with AR around the corner and CD always getting injured if you sneeze on him.

  5. Bhoffman1

    August 22, 2020 at 6:29 pm

    I still can’t believe Mountcastle and Williams are here am I dreaming and more to come. Maybe Elias does read these posts. Now I wish Hyde would play Sisco everyday. DH then catch he’s 25 he can take it.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 22, 2020 at 6:39 pm

      Before the 60 game season started, I would have handed Sisco the #1 catcher spot. However Severino has outright won the role with his play. I wouldn’t mind seeing Sisco at 1st base as well as DH.

  6. OriolesNumber1Fan

    August 22, 2020 at 6:40 pm

    It’s great to see Mountcastle now in the big leagues!!! He seems to be in better shape and moving a lot better in left field from last night’s game and the two walks also shows his patience at the dish. All the things Elias talked about he needed to work on, he worked on, and are now paying off!!! I’m glad Elias waited on this move and now it’s showing up. Like Elias said he wants this to be a more of a permanent move for Mountcastle and he now has paved the way with the recent transactions including the DFA of Dwight Smith. Now I just hope certain fans give this kid the opportunity to succeed without calling for his head after his first mistake. And rookies make mistakes just like everyone else!!!
    Seems everyone wanted to dump Cedric Mullins after his slump and look at him now. Everyone just needs to show a little patience for these kids. One last thing for today, seems Mountcastle has heard all the social media hype on himself. Now I hope he ignores all the critics, especially on this sight!!! It took the Sisco kid, the same type player all hit and questionable defense, into his 3rd year to start to show his promise. I hope they just give this kid the “Chance”!!!

    • CalsPals

      August 22, 2020 at 7:01 pm

      As long as he admits his mistakes I don’t think anyone will want “his head”…go O’s…

      • OriolesNumber1Fan

        August 22, 2020 at 7:08 pm

        Save it – to someone who thinks he walks on water.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 22, 2020 at 11:18 pm

        So suddenly HE is advocating Mullins & Sisco? The Mullins reference especially hurts me. Unbelievable.

        • OriolesNumber1Fan

          August 23, 2020 at 9:49 am

          Suddenly??? Always have… hurts you?? You need a heart for that tinman. Anyone that had his mother pass away and was then called a mommas boy should fry in he//.

    • CalsPals

      August 23, 2020 at 8:10 am

      He’s only allowed on here once a week, girlfriend permission, govt job (mailman) keeps him busy paying for ubers between his homes, but I won’t say anything & he does, meds…gonna go postal soon…go O’s…

      • OriolesNumber1Fan

        August 23, 2020 at 10:05 am

        Sorry ‘Pal’ wrong again. You’re just jealous of my govt software engineer job – mr teacher. You should know the old saying those you can’t do – teach. And I’m sure you’re not even good at that task by what you state on this site. And my girlfriend never tells me what to do. I’m just a really busy guy who can’t live his life on a site with a miserable person and his ‘pal’ who constantly criticizes others like they walk on water. You really need to get a life!!!

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 23, 2020 at 10:12 am

        He always said Sisco was a backup catcher that wasn’t good enough. But now he’s a player and it’s somehow all due to Elias?

        And the only person I EVER heard defend Mullins was myself.

        And who on this site has ever criticized Mountcastle?

        I wonder what color the sky in his world is?

        • OriolesNumber1Fan

          August 23, 2020 at 11:46 am

          My only knock on the whole Sisco case was he was brought up to soon by the old gm Dan Duquette. He was brought up in 2017 so this is his 4th season in the pro’s and he’s only 25. This should be his first full year in the pro’s just like Austin Hays who is also 25. The same could be said for Tanner Scott, he is only 25 and was also brought in 2017. And with the few tweaks in his delivery brought in by Elias is now all star caliber.
          Santander and Mullins also just 25 and are coming into their own. Santader being a special case due to rule 5 draft. One of the few good things Duquette did. So, this is my only knock period, don’t bring up the kids until they are ready. And stop with the shuttle back and forth. Ruins a kids confidence every time they are demoted.

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            August 23, 2020 at 1:04 pm

            But the argument could be made that these young guys would be that much further along if they had the at bats already under their belt. And the shuttle with Mullins hasn’t seemed to hurt his confidence has it? They just need to get up to major league speed.

            And you did criticize and attack me for calling for Santander (and Hays and Sisco) to come out of camp from spring last year. Told me I don’t know anything about baseball. Then he (Santander) immediately tore it up. But what do I know?

            And if you’re going to preach patience with the young guys (which I agree with) … they certainly didn’t practice patience with Sisco last year did they? You were all for the demotion.

            You twist your narratives all the time.

    • CalsPals

      August 23, 2020 at 10:39 am

      Never said I was a teacher, my three degrees would allow it if I wasn’t an administrator…reread what you’re writing, told yourself to fry in he//…wth…meds please…go O’s…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 23, 2020 at 10:45 am

        I noticed that about condemning himself as well.

        • OriolesNumber1Fan

          August 23, 2020 at 12:15 pm

          Since you can’t comprehend the implication – Anyone (in this case me) that had his mother pass away. And was then called a mommas boy (by you) should fry in he//. Can’t explain any simpler for you.

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            August 23, 2020 at 2:15 pm

            Oh I understood what you intended. But you could certainly make things easier by making some sense to begin with.

            No degree required.

        • OriolesNumber1Fan

          August 23, 2020 at 6:31 pm

          This is to reply to your prior post to me: I agree with you on Santander, he was somewhat ready last year but ran out of gas sort of speak. First year guys that never played 162 will have that happen. Even though he only played 93. He learned the grueling schedule could sometime get to you. Maybe we blame that on the manager Branden Hyde for continuing to run him out there. Also showed his versatility in playing center in some games which could have contributed to it.
          And as far as Sisco is concerned, I didn’t like to see him at 24 and riding the bench playing in only 59 games while batting .210 like he did. This after batting .181 in 2018 in 63 games. This isn’t playing your best players as you preach. This demotion would have helped him by getting him back to playing every day and to help get his confidence back. Again, we rushed him in 2017 and being on the shuttle did not help him when he first got started. Just like the Guns n Rose’s song – just a little “Patience”.

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            August 23, 2020 at 7:13 pm

            OK then … I can accept all that. Not agree mind you, but accept. And playing your best players doesn’t always mean you’re going to have the best possible results. And even though Sisco was scuffling, I would have kept running him out there every day, simply on my belief/faith that he was the best catcher we had and he needed to go through what almost all rookies go through to get up to speed. Make no mistake, he’s still going through it and he’s still going to scuffle from time to time. But like I said many times, it’s easy to see his sweet swing, and Sisco has always had that.

            I would also have kept Mullins around despite his struggles. You can see his athleticism just in the way he moves. Same with Santander … they just look like exceptional athletes. We just disagree about how to bring these guys along.

      • OriolesNumber1Fan

        August 23, 2020 at 11:54 am

        Administrator: Duties may include fielding telephone calls, receiving and directing visitors, word processing, creating spreadsheets and presentations, and filing. Nice!

        • Boog Robinson Robinson

          August 23, 2020 at 2:20 pm

          Say … sounds pretty nice. What’s the salary range? LOL

    • CalsPals

      August 23, 2020 at 12:16 pm

      That would be administrative assistant, I also have a master’s degree in reading K-12, I can help you any time you need, but you’ll have to deal with your personal attacks & suicidal thoughts, condemning yourself to he//, can’t help you with that…go O’s…

      • OriolesNumber1Fan

        August 23, 2020 at 5:42 pm

        You started the personal attack towards me. You just couldn’t take it thrown back. The glass house you live in shouldn’t throw stones. And there are certainly no suicide thoughts here maybe it’s just your conscience. And one more time for the slow reader in the back with a degree in reading for kindergarten (are you kidding me) through 12 grade – Since you can’t comprehend the implication – Anyone (in this case me) that had his mother pass away. And was then called a mommas boy (by brr) should fry in he//. Can’t explain any simpler for you.

    • CalsPals

      August 23, 2020 at 6:50 pm

      You need therapy, 1.5 million kids under 15 lose both or 1 of their parents every yr, I’ve lost both my parents, deal with it…good lord…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      August 23, 2020 at 6:55 pm

      The quote is “People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.”…lmao…too easy…go O’s…

      • OriolesNumber1Fan

        August 24, 2020 at 5:03 pm

        Yeah and the people in the glass house in this case is you! For crying out loud, do you need a friggin road map or bread crumbs to to follow a point. Again, you can’t comprehend the implication. Try putting that Mickey mouse degree to some use.

        And btw, you need to grow up!!! Just because I’m close to my parents and respect my elders doesn’t give anyone the right to say that.

        • Boog Robinson Robinson

          August 24, 2020 at 7:00 pm

          C’mon guy, stop it already. Sounds like you’re crying.

  7. Hallbe62

    August 22, 2020 at 10:03 pm

    After watching another Oriole get thrown out at the plate………I’m starting to wonder if Jose’ Flores knows what the hell he is doing !!??&:[email protected]×+÷÷

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 22, 2020 at 11:19 pm

      It’s the curse of Machado.

  8. Massmonster

    August 24, 2020 at 2:47 pm

    seems to me the Orioles have a shot at participating in the playoffs and Elias is not to thrilled about it!

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