2011 Year In Review-GCL O's Pitchers

InsidetheO's continues our Year In Review in which we take an in-depth look at the O's affiliates.

GCL O's Pitching At A Glance_Team ERA: 2.07 (Best in the league)_

Strike-outs/Walks: 504/183 (Most in the league/sixth fewest in the league)_

Team WHIP: 1.09 (best in the league)

Note: this article covers all pitchers who threw at least 20 innings for the DSL O's this season.

The Orioles GCL team had a great season in 2011. They finished 38-22 and won their four-team South Division by seven games. They lost in the first round of the playoffs to the GCL Yankees who were 37-23 on the year. As a pitching staff, the GCL O's finished at the top of almost all of the pitching statistical categories.

GCL O's pitchers combined for a total of six shutouts (tied for third most in the league. The bullpen converted 14 saves (tied for 8th in the 15 team league). The pitching staff specialized in keeping the ball in the park, allowing only 15 homeruns (third fewest) in 533.2 innings.

The top pitcher for the GCL O's was right-hander Jaime Esquivel. Esquivel went 5-1 with a 0.95 ERA. He appeared in 11 games and started eight. He threw 47.1 innings striking out 39 and walking 15. He had a WHIP of 0.85. The 19-year-old was in his first year as a professional and was called up to Class-A Short-Season Aberdeen IronBirds at the end of the GCL season where he appeared in one game and was 0-1 pitching five innings giving up two hits, one earned run, walking four and striking out eight. The Orioles drafted Esquivel out of South Houston HS in the 28th round of the 2010 draft.

No pitcher on the GCL O's staff logged more innings then right-hander Sebastian Vader. Vader pitched 47.2 innings in his second year as a professional. He was drafted by the O's in the 18th round of the 2010 draft out of San Marcos HS in California. Vader went 2-2 this season with a 2.45 ERA in 11 starts. He appeared one time this season as a relief pitcher. In 47.2 innings he gave up 38 hits, 13 earned runs, a homer, and had a 44:16 strikeout to walk ratio. Vader struggled with runners on base. When the bases were empty he had an ERA of 0.36. With runners on base his ERA was 4.76 and with runners in scoring position, his ERA was 6.00. Vader led the GSL O's in strikeouts with 44.

Right-hander Miguel Chalas tied for a team-high in wins with five. He appeared in 11 games and started seven. He pitched 46 innings and had an astonishing strikeout to walk ratio of 42:8. He had an ERA of 2.93. At the end of the Gulf Coast season, Chalas was promoted to the Aberdeen IronBirds. His WHIP was 1.17.

Left-handed pitcher Eduardo Rodriquez played in his second professional season, his first with the GCL O's. He had a solid season, going 1-1 with a 1.81 ERA and a save in 11 appearances, 10 of them starts. He pitched 44.2 innings giving up 28 hits, and nine earned runs. He struck out 46 and walked 17. Rodriquez is only 18 and comes with a lot of upside. Rodriquez was recently named the 18th top prospect in the GCL by Baseball America.

At 6-foot-5 and 215-pounds, Cameron Coffey is a big left-handed pitcher. He is only 19-years old and should only get better. Coffey was drafted by the Orioles in the 22nd round of the 2009 draft out of Houston Christian HS (TX). This season he went 4-3 with a 2.21 ERA. He appeared in 10 games, starting eight. He pitched 36.2 innings, and allowed 35 hits and nine earned runs. He had a very strong strikeout to walk ratio (26:8). Coffey started off the season a little rough, going 0-2 in June with a 5.63 but got better as the season went on. He went 2-0 in August without allowing a run in three starts.

At 20-years-old, Juan Guzman was in his second year of professional ball and first with the GCL O's. Last year he played for the DSL O's going 3-6 mostly as a starter. This year he went 2-1 with a save and a 1.09 ERA almost solely as a reliever. He appeared in 12 games, and only one was as a starter. He pitched 33 innings allowing only 24 hits. He walked seven and struck out 33. He held opponents to a 2.02 average.

Left-handed pitcher Jorge Rivera was in his fourth professional season but this was by far his most successful. It was also his first with the GCL O's. He went 4-0 with a 1.20 ERA and two saves in 11 appearances. He pitched 30 innings allowing only four earned runs. He walked 16 and struck out 34. At the end of the 2011 season, Rivera was called up to the Aberdeen IronBirds.

Left-handed pitcher Yancorix Adrian had a solid 2011 campaign. He went 0-2 with a 2.70 ERA. He picked up one save in 13 appearances. Over 26.2 innings, he struck out 24 and walked 5.

Ivan Hernandez had a much better 2011 season than he did in 2010 when he went 0-8. This season he went 1-1 with a 4.43 ERA and a save. He appeared in 13 games and had a 19:3 strikeout to walk ratio over 22.1 innings.

Kenneth Wise was the 19th round selection in the 2010 draft for the Orioles. This year, his first as a pro, he went 1-3 with a save and an ERA of 6.10. He appeared in 12 games, all in relief. Over 20.2 innings, Wise struck out 23 and walked 9.

Luis Bernardo is trying to revive his career, but this time as a pitcher. He was signed by the O's in 2005 as a catcher but after five years of struggles at the plate, the Orioles wanted to take advantage of his strong arm and moved him to the mound. In his first year as a pitcher, he went 2-3 with a 0.90 ERA in 12 appearances. He pitched 20 innings striking out 15 and walking only two.

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