Dylan Bundy: Orioles' Top Prospect Needs More Seasoning Before Being Called Up
Dylan Bundy of the Baltimore Orioles is one of the top pitching prospects in all of baseball. The 19-year-old has looked dominant at the lower levels but needs more time in the minors before he should play in the majors.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter seems to agree, as he won't be bringing up the phenom this September. Instead, he will be sending him to the instructional league. Showalter was quoted about his decision by MLB.com's Britt Ghiroli:
"Instructional league starts on the 12th [of September]," Showalter said of Bundy’s future. "What did he walk four guys last night? There’s some things, he’s at a level where he’s been challenged with, just like he got challenged more in [High-A] Frederick. He had some outings that weren’t [good]… I think the progression of his development has been great. Couldn’t ask for a better progression.”
That progression should only continue as Bundy learns more about the game and develops his pitches. He started off in Low-A ball and didn't allow a single earned run in eight starts. He also pitched only 30 innings.
Should Showalter have called up Bundy?
Then, in High-A, he pitched 57.0 innings in 12 games and had an ERA of 2.84. As he continues to rise, so does his ERA. In Double-A, he played just three games but was able to have an ERA of 3.24 in 16.2 innings.
His hot start in the minors tapered off slightly, but he should still be able to contribute on at least the Double-A level in 2013. The instructional league will pay huge dividends to the flamethrowing righty because it should help him develop his curveball into one of the best in the minors.
Combining an improved curveball with his 95-mph fastball, 92-mph cutter and plus changeup will give Bundy four pitches to rely on. He also has a two-seamer that he can show against both righties and lefties.
The extra year in the minors should allow Bundy to extend his arm out. After pitching just one year in the minors, with just 100 innings, it would be hard for him to transition to the 200-plus-inning workload of a major league stater.
Despite being just 20 years old next season and being in just his second year in professional baseball, Bundy should be a September call-up in 2013.
And by the time 2016 rolls around, he could be in competition with Stephen Strasburg for the title of best pitcher in the Baltimore-D.C. area.
Scott Carasik is a Featured Columnist and Trends and Traffic Writer for Bleacher Report. As a Featured Columnist, he covers the Atlanta Falcons, NFL and NFL draft. He is also the Falcons analyst at Drafttek, runs the NFL Draft Website ScarDraft.com and hosts Kvetching Draftniks Radio.
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