Last season, the Baltimore Orioles surprised everyone by finishing with a record multiple games above .500, at 83-79. They were only three games out from the last playoff spot, and entering this year, the team has much higher expectations.
After years of tanking, the Baltimore Orioles are finally ready to be contenders with top prospects in all of Major League Baseball ready to play in the majors. Knowing that their window to compete is now open, the Baltimore Orioles are making major acquisitions to help their team win.
According to top ESPN baseball reporter, Jeff Passan, the Baltimore Orioles have traded for left-handed starting pitcher Cole Irvin and right-handed pitching prospect Kyle Virbitsky to the Oakland Athletics in exchange for prospect infielder Darell Hernaiz.
Cole Irvin, who turns 29 on January 31, has spent time with two teams during his four-year career in the majors, the Philadelphia Phillies, and Oakland Athletics. Last season with the Oakland Athletics, the star left-handed pitcher had a 3.98 ERA in 30 games started, 181 innings pitched, and 128 strikeouts. He accumulated 2.1 bWAR, which made last season the best year of his career.
Kyle Virbitsky is a 24-year-old pitcher that was drafted in the 17th round of the 2021 MLB draft and has only advanced to the A+ level in two years of professional baseball. In the minors, Kyle Virbitsky has a 4.49 career ERA in 30 games, 142.1 innings pitched, and 162 strikeouts.
Going back to Oakland is infield prospect Darell Hernaiz, who is only 21 years old and reached AA last season in the minors. Throughout his 2022 minor league campaign, playing in three different levels, Hernaiz combined for a .273 batting average, a .341 on-base percentage, 12 home runs, and 32 stolen bases.
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