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It's Time For Orioles To Start Ramon Urias

I will not overreact. I will not overreact. I will not overreact.

Forget it. It's time to start Ramon Urias. 

There was plenty to like in Baltimore's doubleheader-split on Tuesday. The O's fell down early in both games and came back to make both competitive. They found a way to win the nightcap, ensuring they weren't swept by the AL West basement-dwelling Mariners.

Several players helped in each comeback, but perhaps none more than Urias.

The utility infielder started at second base in Game 1 and slugged a two-run homer in the fifth inning, closing the O's deficit to just one. Urias started at second in Game 2 as well, saving his lone hit until the bottom half of the seventh to walk it off, as you can see in the embedded video.

In just two games, Urias showed up both players starting in the middle infield for the Orioles — Rio Ruiz and Freddy Galvis.

It's time he take one of their jobs.

Ruiz isn't even a second baseman — manager Brandon Hyde has been experimenting with Ruiz there to try and fill that spot in the lineup. Ruiz's bat hasn't justified the defensive mismatch, as he's slashing .125/.222/.219. His career OPS is only .657, so there's no track record to fall back on either.

The Orioles didn't invest a whole lot in Galvis when they signed him and for good reason. The 31-year-old shortstop has been a below-average hitter for his career and doesn't add a ton of defensive value. If there's a younger option with a higher ceiling that needs playing time, Galvis' contract doesn't protect him from being benched or jettisoned.

Urias is that guy, for now at least. At 26, his best baseball is likely ahead of him. He's never been given a look in the major leagues before Baltimore and has spent a significant portion of his professional career playing in the Mexican league. The St. Louis Cardinals waived him prior to the 2020 season before the Orioles picked him up.

And here's the deal — if Urias struggles, the Orioles don't lose anything. Galvis and Ruiz have been exceptionally bad so far anyway and there are still middle infield options in the farm system that can get a look.

Urias has earned a shot to start everyday. It was only two games, but he's showing more life than any of the other options in the Orioles' middle infield right now.

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Friday, 12 August 2022

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