As the calendar flips to a new year, it’s time for more 2021 MLB predictions. Let’s take a look at the Baltimore Orioles 2021 season. While last year was a difficult season for the Orioles, the team did see some encouraging signs from a few key players. Baltimore will look to continue moving in the right direction while building for the future.
2021 MLB Predictions: The Rotation
The Orioles rotation will still likely be lead by John Means, who struggled a bit following a second-place finish in the 2019 Rookie of the Year voting. While Means no longer performed at an All-Star level; he still had a fairly respectable season. Means, entering his age 28 season, will hopefully benefit with a more normal Spring Training.
Joining Means at the top of the rotation is Alex Cobb, who performed pretty well last season. In 10 starts, Cobb pitched to a 4.30 ERA last season and will hopefully be more motivated as he enters the last year of his contract. With a strong start, Cobb could become an attractive trade candidate for a contender.
The rest of the rotation is still very much a work in progress. Milone and Wojciechowski are free agents while Jorge Lopez struggled. Potentially rounding out the rotation are youngsters Keegan Akin and Dean Kremer.
2021 MLB Predictions: The Lineup
Turning our attention to the lineup in our 2021 MLB predictions, we start behind the plate where the tandem of Pedro Severino and Chance Sisco will return. First base should be much stronger as Trey Mancini is set to return after beating cancer this past year. Mancini will also likely see time back in the outfield but his return will help boost both the offense and the team morale. Chris Davis is still, sadly, on the roster but hopefully won’t get too much playing time in 2021.
Second base is up in the air after the team made the decision to part ways with Hanser Alberto following his breakout season. Yolmer Sanchez was claimed from the White Sox, where he hit .313 in limited playing time. Shortstop should see the return of Richie Martin who missed last year after undergoing wrist surgery. He will look to replicate some of the production lost in the Jose Iglesias trade. The hot corner will likely see Rio Ruiz return with Pat Valaika set to return to his utility role.
Outside of Mancini, the Orioles will look to Austin Hays to help hold down left field. The still very young Hays will look to build on a respectable 2020. Joining Hays, Cedric Mullens will handle center field after a very solid season. Rounding out the outfield is Gold Glove finalist Anthony Santander. Finally, the Orioles will look to youngster Ryan Mountcastle. Mountcastle had a fantastic debut last year and enters the season as the 90th overall prospect in baseball.
2021 MLB Predictions:
The American League East is a bit in transition with the Rays having lost Blake Snell and Charlie Morton and the Yankees struggling to find starters for their rotation. With that said, it still will likely be a growing year in Baltimore. The roster is still incredibly young which will likely hurt in a longer 2021. However, the team shouldn’t necessarily be judged on wins and losses. Instead, let’s focus on seeing the establishment of a young core and growing as a team.
As we look forward to 2021, Let’s go O’s!
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