There’s an old saying that says that only get one chance to make a first impression, and Baltimore’s 20-year-old rookie Manny Machado apparently firmly believes this as well.
After being called up last Thursday, Machado torched the Kansas City Royals by going 6 for 16 with three home runs and seven runs batted in during the Orioles’ and Royals’ four-game series. This feat earned Machado a share of the American League Co-Player of the Week honors, along with Boston’s Adrian Gonzalez.
Machado was the Orioles’ first pick in the 2010 draft. He was selected third overall. During his first season in the Baltimore farm system in 2010, Machado hit .306 in 36 at bats. During his first full season in 2011, Machado hit .257, splitting his time between Delmarva and Frederick. In his 382 at bats he hit 11 home runs and drove in 50 runs.
This year, Machado had been playing well for AA Bowie in 2012, hitting .266 with 11 home runs and 59 runs batted in over 402 at bats. Manny was then called up to play third base for the O’s, which is a bit different for him, considering he had played shortstop his whole minor league career save for two games this year. So far, he has handled all 11 chances error-free, and he continues to work hard at his new position.
The young infielder was the 11th-ranked prospect by Baseball America in 2012, and he has proved that the high ranking is deserved.
Making matters even more interesting is the first overall pick in that draft was that of the cross-town rivals, the Washington Nationals. Washington took Bryce Harper first overall, which now injects even more energy into their rivalry and respective playoff pushes.
I wouldn’t necessarily expect Machado to keep that pace, but if he can manage to live up to most of the hype, we are looking at the future right now.
So let’s sit back and enjoy the show!
by Andy Mindzak