In part two of our key players of the second half for the Baltimore Orioles we will examine the key position player. There were several candidates, but we believe Henry Urrutia is the key position player for the Birds in the second half.
The oddity of this is that we actually chose Urrutia before the news broke yesterday that he was being called up by the Orioles this weekend. It was a given that he was going to be called up at some point, but it came as a bit of a surprise that it was this fast.
Urrutia was our choice as the key position player for the second half because of the brutal performance of O’s designated hitters this season. Baltimore’s DH’s have the worst batting average in the American League and have yet to find a consistent bat to pencil in the lineup in that position.
If Urrutia can provide some sort of consistency as the left handed DH, it will instantly improve the Orioles offense to a point it has not really seen this season. Baltimore, just like all MLB teams, will face right handers more often than not the rest of the season and the addition of Urrutia’s left handed could be hugely instrumental in the Orioles playoff push down the stretch.
Henry has been lighting up the minor leagues ever since he finally was able to begin playing after a Visa issue delayed his arrival. Urrutia started with the AA Bowie Baysox and instantly began to show his talent. He hit .365 with seven homers, 37 RBI and 73 hits in 200 at bats. Perhaps the most impressive stat he had in Bowie was his .433 on base percentage.
It became apparent that he was extremely talented and Baltimore wanted to know what they really had and if Urrutia could be an option as a contributor this season so the O’s promoted him to the AAA Norfolk Tides. The success continued in south eastern Virginia as he is currently hitting .367 with six RBI, four doubles and 22 hits in 60 at bats.
Again, it was quite a coincidence that Baltimore decided to promote Urrutia this weekend as we had already decided that Henry was our key position player of the second half, and now he is even more so. The Orioles have 66 games remaining and trail the Boston Red Sox by 4 ½ games in the AL East and trail the Texas Rangers for the second wildcard spot by 1 ½ games. Urrutia is going to make an impact on this race and for Baltimore’s sake, hopefully it will be a positive one.
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