On Wednesday I had the pleasure of heading to Bowie for the Baysox media day. I was privileged enough to talk to some of the Orioles young talent including Steve Johnson, Caleb Joseph, Zach Britton, Chorye Spoone and Brandon Waring.
Brief summaries of the guys below.
Steve Johnson – A spitting image of his father Dave, Steve and I discussed his adventurous spring between San Francisco and Baltimore. By now, every O’s fan is familiar with his story; picked up in the George Sherrill trade, selected by the Giants in the Rule 5 Draft, returned to the Orioles in March of this year. Johnson had a successfull season in 2009, he posted a 2.84 ERA in 38 innings with Bowie after posting an 8-4 record with 102 strikeouts in the Dodgers farm system earlier in the year.
Caleb Joseph – One of the most approachable guys in the Orioles farm system is catcher Caleb Joseph, we talked with him on our podcast before spring training. Last year he had a lot of pop in his bat in Frederick. He hit .284 with 12 homers and 60 RBI, but was reportedly tired in the later weeks of the season. Joseph addressed that in our interview as well as his experience catching Kam Mickolio against David Ortiz in spring training. It’s one of the best baseball stories I’ve heard and great for a laugh.
Chroye Spoone – Pasadena local Chorye Spoone is back at the AA level after rehabbing from right shoulder surgery in 2008. Spoone was eager to inform the media that he returned to spring training in shape, despite quotes from Dave Trembley that said otherwise, and that he’s eager to win at every level of play. Spoone discussed his dream of playing at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in our video interview.
Zach Britton – One of the most talented pitchers at Bowie this season is Zach Britton, who posted a 2.70 ERA and 131 strike outs last year with the Frederick Keys. He led the keys in wins, innings pitched, ERA and strike outs and was named to the Carolina League All Star game. Britton and I discussed his Spring with the Orioles and the mentors on the big club.
Brandon Waring – Acquired in the Ramon Hernandez trade, Brandon Waring may be the Orioles answer at third base in the future. Waring spent last year between Frederick and Bowie, was named the Carolina League MVP and earned the Brooks Robinson Award for being the O’s Minor League Player of the Year. He led the keys in homers with 26, RBI with 90 and double with 35. I asked Brandon about the Orioles need for a third baseman in the future and his thoughts about making the big club.