Results tagged ‘ Dana Eveland ’
The Orioles claimed third base prospect Zelous Wheeler off waivers from the Brewers, and to make room for him designated for assignment left-handed starter Dana Eveland. Eveland stated that if he cleared waivers, he would accept an assignment to Norfolk, where he likely would join the starting rotation. It’s unlikely that Eveland will be picked up by another team, because he’s not significantly better than what most teams already have and organizations are looking to reduce their rosters, not add to them. So it makes sense for Eveland to hang onto a job he will have, rather than try to find one in a tough market.
Zelous Wheeler is a twenty-five year old. It looks like the Brewers had been developing him as a utility player; he played 2009 as a third baseman, moved to shortstop for 2010, and moved to third for 2011, playing several games each year at second base. Offensively, Wheeler’s strongest attribute is probably his strike-zone judgement; his career on-base percentage is .371. His most noteworthy attribute is his consistency; his full-season minor-league batting averages have been .258, .268, .275, and .272; his corresponding on-base percentages have been .346, .370, .382, and .378. Unfortuately for him, he’s listed at 5’10″ and 220 lb., so he doesn’t really look like an athlete.
Wheeler was optioned to Norfolk, where he’ll compete with Josh Barfield, Ryan Adams, Matt Antonelli, and Josh Bell for time at third base (with some of these other players covering second base.) It’s looking more and more as though Josh Bell is the odd man out here, and I would be surprised to see him still in the Orioles organization by Memorial Day.
Before the 2011 season, Baseball America ranked him as one of the top 25 prospects in the Orioles system. Is he still that highly regarded?
Remember that being one of the top 25 prospects in a system isn’t really THAT significant, although it’s obviously better than not being ranked. Almost every team really needs only 18-20 key players, with the remainder of the roster being more-or-less interchangeable role players. That said, his ranking tells us:
- Baseball America, in its rankings, may overreact to the most recent season. Henson’s 2010 was significantly better than his previous seasons and BA overreacted to it.
- The Orioles’ farm system is really, really shallow.
Henson didn’t hit for average (.247), he didn’t draw walks (41 in 498 plate appearances, leading to a .313 OBP), didn’t hit for power (a .321 slugging percentage), and didn’t steal bases (9 in 14 attempts.) Defensively, he played well in right field but didn’t have the range for center. So, you’ve got a corner outfielder with the offensive skillset of Cesar Izturis. The Orioles thought so highly of him that they sent him to the Dodgers as partial payment for Dana Eveland, a 27-year-old starting pitcher who spent most of 2011 in AAA.