Minor Monday: Aberdeen manager Kyle Moore talks prospects - BaltimoreBaseball.com

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Minor Monday: Aberdeen manager Kyle Moore talks prospects

Photo credit: Baltimore Orioles

Kyle Moore has seen his share of talented players pass through High-A Aberdeen.

The IronBirds manager steered his team to a 58-61 finish despite dealing with a roster that had almost constant turnover. It was a good problem to have.

“It was a tale of three different seasons for us,” Moore said. “We started super hot, we had a ton of good players. I was really proud of what we did with all of those good players, but then they moved on. A lot of guys went to Bowie. We have players in Norfolk now. That’s what it’s all about. Our job is to get players ready for Double-A. They’re playing well up there.”

Moore gave his assessment of some of the most talented players in the Orioles’ minor-league system. He also offered some insight on players who have flown under the radar.

Right-handed pitcher Grayson Rodriguez:

Aberdeen Stats: 3-0, 1.54 ERA, .069 WHIP

Moore’s analysis: “He’s probably one of the best I have ever seen. He’s going to be a cornerstone in this organization because he can be at the very top of the rotation. He has everything you want out of a major-league No. 1. He’s a top-end guy. The makeup is all there. He’s a great kid, a hard worker, and a clubhouse leader. He also has the best stuff I have ever seen. He’s the type of kid you dream about when you think about a No 1 starter.”

Rodriguez probably will start Game 2 of the playoffs for Bowie on Wednesday.

Shortstop Jordan Westburg

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Aberdeen Stats: .286 /.391/.482, 16 doubles, 8 home runs, 41 RBIs

Moore’s analysis: “He was a really solid player who is extremely polished. He’s probably closer to being big-league ready than anyone else we have. I thought he was above average at every phase of the game — the offense, defense, run-phase of the game. He can play shortstop, which is going to make him really valuable. I loved his offensive approach … He’s super competitive. When you draft a big-time SEC player who can play shortstop, that’s what you hope you get. I am really impressed with him.”

Westburg is also at Bowie.

Shortstop/Third Baseman Gunnar Henderson

Aberdeen Stats: .230 /.343/.432, 9 homers 35 RBIs

Moore’s analysis: “Gunnar is really young and is a big, physical presence. Obviously, a high-school kid that is less polished than Westburg and your major college kids, but the thing about Gunnar is, his ceiling could be higher because he is so physical and so big and so young. I am really proud of Gunnar. He made the biggest strides of any player on our team this year mentally and dealing with adversity. He was 0 for his first 28 and what really defined his season was his next 28 [at-bats]. If you look at the last two weeks he spent here, he absolutely dominated. He hit a bunch of homers, his OPS was out the roof. His defense was always solid.  The Baltimore people have a lot to look forward to. Mentally he really grew up a lot.”

Henderson was promoted to Bowie a week ago.

First Baseman Andrew Daschbach

Aberdeen Stats: .268/.365/.437, 8 homers, 35 RBIs

Moore’s analysis: “He started off here hitting about .140. He really scuffled and struggled and all of sudden you look up now and he had a heck of a year. After struggling so much at the beginning of the year, it’s almost impossible to do that. I really think he can be a sneaky piece to this whole thing. He’s going to play for somebody someday.”

Daschbach is at Bowie.

Outfielder Kyle Stowers

Aberdeen Stats: .275/.404/.496, 7 homers, 32 RBIs

Moore’s analysis: “A guy that might not get the hype as other guys in the organization, but really smooth and you’re going to hear a lot about him. He’s going to be at the forefront of this organization.”

Stowers is at Triple-A Norfolk.

Right-handed pitcher Brandon Young

Aberdeen Stats: 1-2, 4.24  ERA, 1.24 WHIP

Moore’s analysis: “Free-agent signing because the draft was so short, but this guy has a chance to pitch in the big leagues. He has really good stuff and has had a great year from start to finish. He dominated in Delmarva and came up here and had some issues to work through. He faced some veteran hitters and a smaller strike zone but his last two outings have been very promising. You have to love that.”

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Orioles20

    September 20, 2021 at 8:59 am

    Stowers has been impressive to me. To play at three levels in your first full season and having no season last year. Same with Westburg and Henderson. These guy are moving fast and it’s impressive. The fact that they’re moving up levels at this rate makes me optimistic for next year. We all know Rutschman and Rodriguez are going to be up some time early next year if everything goes right. But I think it’s also possible you see Stowers and Westburg and Henderson next year too.

    • Ironbird season ticket holder

      September 20, 2021 at 9:32 am

      I don’t see a mention of all the errors Henderson has. I question the “good defensive player” comment. It makes me question the other analysis. However I did like what I saw from the other players mentioned in the piece. However it continues to appear offense is prized over a good all around player and that is slightly concerning. TT Bowens continues to impress in my opinion. He looks to be a good all arounder. Excellent defense with great instincts. Started many double plays or should have been double plays the hard way and sometimes his teammates were not in position to finish. His bat was really starting to come on.

  2. Bman

    September 20, 2021 at 9:41 am

    Next year we’ll see a bunch of these guys make the leap. Rutschman, Westburg, Stowers. Don’t forget DL Hall won’t be far behind either. Bradish probably. I expect Henderson and Cowser to shoot up through the organization quickly too. Interesting decisions in the off-season. Who to add, release, trade, sign, and cover on the 40-man to protect from the rule-5.

  3. OriolesNumber1Fan

    September 20, 2021 at 10:49 am

    Awesome news on all the players mentioned. No concern with errors by Henderson considering all the different positions they are/were experimenting with him. Once they stop moving him around from the outfield, 1st base back to 3rd or SS permanently, he will be fine.
    One other side note: Ravens sit at number 6 currently in attendance which is fine. But, to have 70,417 fans in attendance for a Sunday night game that ended nearly at 11:30 pm last night and went down to the wire, so no fans left early and where these fans had to get up this morning for work shows the fans in Baltimore truly support their teams. This game, which the Ravens did win was exciting and for just the second game of the year bringing the Ravens to .500 record. This shows that the fans will be there for the Orioles as well when they turn this franchise around.

    RK TEAM GMS TOTAL AVG PCT
    1 NY Jets 1 75,626 75,626 91.7
    2 NY Giants 1 74,119 74,119 89.8
    3 Kansas City 1 72,973 72,973 100.1
    4 Los Angeles 1 70,445 70,445 98.5
    5 Carolina 2 140,886 70,443 95.5
    6 Baltimore 1 70,417 70,417 99.5

    • Baltimore Castaway

      September 20, 2021 at 2:59 pm

      O’s#1Fan,

      I certainly do hope that you are right about the Orioles but there are other factors in-play;

      -The NFL and Ravens are a much bigger deal than MLB and the Orioles are

      -The Ravens have won the Super Bowl TWICE in the last 20 years–this keeps the fire burning for fan engagement, by comparison the Orioles haven’t won the WS in 38 years….in the intervening time the Orioles have played a highly uninspiring brand of baseball during much of this time

      – attending a Ravens game is by definition being part of a larger crowd of amped-up Fans thus providing safety in large numbers–quite unlike attending an Orioles game

      – OPACY is a historic baseball Park, but it has several serious limitations, including wayyyy too many rain delays and postponements and it also is a bandbox for hitters taking away the finer points of the game.

      – while the facility is impeccably maintained, it is in need of a bigger JumboTron and Loudspeaker system, and more fan-friendly viewing and gathering platforms.

      I am concerned that the Orioles picked a terrible time to provide an unappealing and lackluster product, fan-experience and safe environment—they very well may have lost this Market.

      Before people start hating on these thoughts, please know that I live in Baltimore City, have attended 100’s of games there and love this Franchise. But there are now other factors in play that may make the triumphant return of Orioles baseball unattainable.

      A very sad state of affairs indeed.

    • CalsPals

      September 20, 2021 at 3:31 pm

      Depressing BC, thx for sharing from a hometown perspective….go O’s…

    • BarstoolSleeper

      September 20, 2021 at 4:07 pm

      BC while I respect your opinion I ask you to consider this. When the O’s were in the playoffs under Buck and Dan’s regime, OPACY was electric. Granted that was 7 seasons ago now but the city was painted in orange and black, I attended several regular season and postseason games as I too lived and worked downtown. I saw several Ravens players attending Orioles games and vice versa. This city is starving for a baseball team they can get behind. Put a decent product on the field and fans will come back. Its not the doom and gloom you portray. You can’t compare the nfl to the mlb. You get 8 home games vs 81 per season. The demand just isn’t there to go to every mlb game. Also there’s no tailgate at a baseball game so you lose that camaraderie with fans. While I agree that the stadium could upgrade the Jumbotron and sound system, personally those upgrades aren’t getting me to go to games. I go because of baseball not the upgraded crab shuffle and hot dog race in high definition haha.

    • TxBirdFan

      September 20, 2021 at 4:59 pm

      Is anyone aware of any capital plans in the works to upgrade OPACY? I live in Dallas and have had season tickets to the Rangers for 5 years, and the ‘extra’s’ are worth it. The Rangers will lose 100 games this year but they still draw 20,000+ fans almost every game. And Dallas is known as a football town, not a baseball town. That tells me an upgraded stadium will bring fans to the ballpark.

    • dlgruber1

      September 20, 2021 at 5:31 pm

      TxBirdFan, from a safety standpoint, are there any issue in the surrounding neighborhoods where the Rangers play? From what I hear people from the Baltimore area say on this site is that that is the biggest issue-as far as the dwindling attendance. I”m sure a winning team will absolutely attract fans but if the surrounding area of a ballpark is not seen as a safe area that will certainly keep many fans away, especially those with young children.

      • OriolesNumber1Fan

        September 20, 2021 at 5:55 pm

        DLG – This bad area near Camden Yards didn’t seem to bother 70,417 fans across the parking lot last night at the Ravens game!

    • CalsPals

      September 20, 2021 at 6:10 pm

      Safety in #’s, 70,000 fans vs avg 9,700…go O’s…

      • Birdman

        September 20, 2021 at 7:36 pm

        Yes, I think “safety in numbers” is a factor … having attended many games at both OPACY and M&T Stadium, I can attest that there is a much more secure feeling, especially at night, going to and from the stadium among 70,000 fans at a Ravens game, as compared to a typical sparse Orioles crowd.

        • OriolesNumber1Fan

          September 21, 2021 at 6:38 am

          Bogus! 70,000 fans or close to 10,000 fans because of the rebuild, what street thug group is going to take on either??? This just shows ignorance. And I have never read in the Sun that a fan was attacked by such a person. Maybe two fans went at it, probably two from this site with their down on the Orioles constant argumentative style I could see and deserve it but but no street thugs.

    • CalsPals

      September 21, 2021 at 7:48 am

      Targeted again, just for a difference of opinion…wow…go O’s…

  4. Icterus fan

    September 20, 2021 at 5:45 pm

    When attending games you have to be street smart and keep your head on a swivel. I’ve never had an issue but also don’t look for trouble and try to be situationally aware. On home games, there’s a steady stream of suburbanites coming from the parking garages on Conway. It’s not a long walk.

    To me, Barstoolsleeper nailed it in his response.

    I know the whole “city crime”
    debate is a hot button topic and draws some testy responses depending on viewpoints.

    In essence the city has its faults, but the stadium is accessible and once we start playing some competitive ball, I think our beautiful little park will begin to flourish again. People only want a little hope.

  5. OriolesNumber1Fan

    September 20, 2021 at 5:53 pm

    BC – Per your comment: “OPACY is a historic baseball Park, but it has several serious limitations, including wayyyy too many rain delays and postponements and it also is a bandbox for hitters taking away the finer points of the game.” Cannot do anything regarding mother nature but the field at OPACY has excellent drainage so rain delays, once they’re over can be overcome quickly. Also, regarding the friendly confines of the stadium can be easily rectified by moving both bullpens further back by the width and the length of one or both, if the Orioles wish to take away or rearrange some of the sitting picnic area behind the bullpens.
    Also, the center field fence can also be moved way back to the backdrop wall or way closer to it if they should choose. Guesstimating that the friendly confines can be more like death valley from the start of the bullpen all the way towards right center field. So 364 will now be 384 or 404 depending on one or both bullpens moved back and 410 to 400 from center to right center will be approximately 440 or 430 to 420. And the 373 power alley in right center will stay the same but all just to start. If seats are removed you can do a lot more but this would probably cost a lot more.
    So basically if you moved both bullpens back to the center field backdrop along with the center field fence, you would add a lot more area so this will not be an issue any longer.

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