It's been a tough year for the Baltimore Orioles prospects.
Top overall prospect (according to MLB.com) Dylan Bundy has yet to make an appearance and recently underwent Tommy John surgery, shelving him for at least a year.
No. 2 guy Kevin Gausman dominated in the minors before being recalled to Baltimore, where he got shelled. He's currently one of several on the daily shuttle that runs back and forth from Triple-A Norfolk to Camden Yards.
No. 3 prospect Jonathan Schoop missed nearly two months with a stress fracture in his back.
Branden Kline, the No. 8 prospect, has made just seven starts, missing time with a fracture in his leg.
That doesn't even begin to cover the prospects who have gotten off to terrible starts, including:
- Xavier Avery (No. 7): .254, 92 K in 342 AB
- Glynn Davis (No. 10): .234, 11 SB in 51 G
- Devin Jones (No. 14): 4-4, 5.65 ERA
- Parker Bridwell (No. 19): 6-8, 5.24 ERA
For all of the disappointments, there have been just as many pleasant surprises, such as 20-year-old right-hander Zach Davies.
Davies was an under-sized and under-weight pitcher who dropped all the way to the 26th-round in the 2011 draft, in part because of a commitment to Arizona State. The O's went over-slot to sign him and have been rewarded with a strong performance.
He posted a 3.86 ERA in 25 appearances (17 starts) last season for Low-A Delmarva and this season he's putting together one of the best campaigns in the High-A Carolina League. His 3.35 ERA ranks 11th in the league, and he's 13th in strikeouts and third in innings pitched.
There's an outside chance that Davies could find his way to Double-A as a 20-year-old before the end of the season.
As good as Davies has been, he's not the top pitcher in the organization. Heck, he's not even the top right-handed pitcher.
Seeing as how we're at the halfway point of the MLB season, it seems appropriate to take a look at the O's top prospects by position.