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June 3, 2010

Scouts talk about Brandon Snyder

Triple-A first baseman Brandon Snyder was supposed to be the Orioles’ first baseman of the future, but the 23-year-old is hitting just .234 for the Tides with two homers and 21 RBIs. And his struggles come after he hit .248 for Norfolk last season with two homers and 43 RBIs in 73 games after he knocked around Double-A pitching to the tune of a .343 average.

Only two of the scouts that we talked to had seen the Orioles’ first round pick in 2005 recently, and neither offered a ringing endorsement. That shouldn’t come as a complete surprise with how much he’s struggled this year.

Scout No. 1

“With Snyder, I did notice mechanical differences with Snyder from last year to this year. It’s almost like he is trying to always get the inside pitch and he is pulling out his front side. He’s pulling out and can’t get to the outside pitch. He’s made an adjustment there and now he is not able to do his thing that he used to do, and that’s hit the ball away to right center. He is so concerned with the inside pitch that he can’t hit the pitch he was so good at hitting before. Every hitter has weaknesses and strengths and he needs to go back and make sure he can handle the outside pitch. Right now, he can’t hit either one of them.”

“Brandon Snyder had a great year last year at Bowie and I still project him to be a major league player, an average major league corner. He’ll come out of it.”

Scout No. 2

“I’ve always thought that he was a real overrated guy. I never really liked him. He’s not much of an athlete, not a real hard worker. He doesn’t really get after it real hard. He doesn’t really have a position. He’s an extra guy to me. I don’t think he’s a future starting corner infielder in the big leagues.”

Posted by Jeff Zrebiec at 1:12 AM | | Comments (19)


A mediocre prospect who struggles at Triple A for the second time shouldn't be a story at all but Andy MacPhail and his braintrust were counting on this guy to be our starting 1B next year. It was painfully obvious to anyone looking at Snyder that he's not a top hitting prospect and he still hasn't shown much power, yet we have had him penciled in at 1B in 2011 for two years now. There's no backup plan. Now, for a 9th straight offseason we're going to go into planning without a first baseman, the easiest position to fill! This allmighty plan of MacPhail's is a failure and was bad from the start but you and Schmuck bought intoit like banks and bad mortgages. Snyder and Bell have been the team's excuses for not doing anything to get long-term solutions at the corner infield slots and now that both are doing poorly, we're stuck with another offseason with the exact same weaknesses. I'm sure we'll have the exact same roster of washed up once-weres like Atkins next spring and then everyone in the front office will be shocked when it's another horrible season.

Scout #2 says it all. We have serious hitting instruction flaws throughout the Orioles' system - top to bottom. No one seems to be able to adjust.

That is why the O's need to spend more, sign better hitters at the major league level, and stay away from bargain-basement deals like Atkins.

@Fritz - to be fair to the current GM, he's not the one who drafted Brandon Snyder, or fellow first-rounder Billy Rowell. I'd like to see how his picks work out first before condemning him for the sins of the previous GMs.

Whew . . Thank God we signed Atkins. Even better, we have an option on his contract. Hooray stop-gaps!!

This team is such a joke! Nobody really cares anymore and they won't until they show the fans they care about competing. Go out and overpay for Carl Crawford this winter and attempt to get Fielder (trade Erbe, Britton, etc. whatever . . none of these guys are proven yet).

Jeff, I do have to praise you for posting these scouting reports. It's takes some guts to post bad press about the Orioles and their "goldmine of prospects."

Be careful, you may lose your press pass

If Garrett Atkins is considered a big league corner infielder than Brandon Snyder sure as heck can be too.

Carlos Pena is a FA this year. Just sayin'...

It's nice to hear some honest unbiased opininions rather than the Orioles tellinf us how gretat these minor leaguers are.

When we started the season I was really high on the MacPhail plan---good young pitching and a solid group of hitters--i know we lost Roberts probably with him we would maybe have won 5 additional games--that is still obscenely poor--what are we doing wrong---the idea of the plan sounds pretty good---why are our prospects as well as regulars playing uninspired and embarassing baseball?

solution to the orioles problems. offer the marlins, rays and twins scouts big money to come to the orioles because those guys can recognize talent and sign the marlins, rays and twins minor league coaches because those guys know how to develop talent.

The Orioles need to bring in proven major league stars rather than constantly rely on prospects, because the vast majority of Orioles prospects end up failing at the major league level. It will take A LOT of money to attract proven stars due to the dismal state of the Orioles, but it's their only hope. I think the Orioles should try to attract both Adrian Gonzalez and Prince Fielder with contracts big enough to entice them to come to Baltimore. Put Gonzalez at LF/1B and Fielder at DH/1B, to go along with Markakis, Wieters (hopefully he improves), Jones (hopefully he improves), etc. They would probably have to sign Fielder and Gonzalez to contracts in the range of 6 years, $180 million, but that is the only way I can see the Orioles truly turning the team around, at least on offense. Furthermore, fire Terry Crowley and bring in a real hitting coach.

question to eric...why would any proven major league star want to come to balt. contenders will pay the same money the orioles would for top tier talent and they have a chance to go to the playoffs and world series.

I should have said 6 years, $210 million, because no team is goinig to offer Fielder or Gonzalez more than about $25 millon per year. I think the extra $10 million per year just might be enough to attract these players to a team as bad as the Orioles. Even with that huge amount of extra money, I think there would be a good chance that Fielder and Gonzalez still might decide that it's simply not worth the extra money to play for a franchise as horrible as the Orioles.

Scout # 2 must befrom a team that contends every year...Yanks, Red Sox, Philly etc.
Scout # 1 must be from either the O's or Pittsburgh.
I never thought this would be the case but, we are further in the gutter now with Andy's plan than we were with Flanny & Beatty at the switch.
We are so bad even Tom Boswell has deserted us...who's next...George Will? How in God's name have we tolerated such garbage for so long?
I truly feel bad for Trembley...he wanted this to work...McFail failed him & all of us & I could care less if Pete the Greek dumped him first.
Keep thinking over those draft picks...we're in no hurry, what's another couple long as we have "The Plan"?

The Orioles are the worst team in baseball, many of their players are either jurt or playing bad, the managers about to be fired and the top minor league players are performing miserably. Any more poop to pile on it?

aren't rowell and snyder, respectively 21 and 23 yrs old? if so ,it's a little early to be saying they aren't major leaguers.

I understand everyone's frustration with the current O's, but instead of whining, why do you not offer real, common sense, and plausible solutions?

In rebuttal to some of the above:
As is stated MacPhail is not responsible for Brandon Snyder, so his skill level, or lack thereof, is on someone else's shoulders.

Pay a player $35 Mil per to play for the O's? What? he wouldn't come here for that amount? Hmm, let's see, $25 mil is a VERY large contract, and there have been how many WS rings pawned by former players? I see, and how many former players have pawned $10 Mil?

Hmm, Methinks they'd come.

But anyway, if you think they wouldn't want Baltimore's money, than the only real solution "IS" to develop your own players, but I do agree we need some serious help in the scouting and player development areas. I seem to remember another catcher we drafted, figured he couldn't play and dumped him. As I recall he's now cruising around Philly's OF. Some guy named ...Werth?

Firing Trembley is NOT the answer, but someone has to pay.

Go O's!

After years of playing against this kid in AAU, he may work hard. Like to the extent his Dad would have him do at least 2 hours of BP a day at their house. Hell, his dad built NVBA so he had a place to train.

Maybe things changed... but yeah.

You all should be thrilled now! All this complaining about not having proven MLB talent and your team goes out and gets JJ Hardy, Mark Reynolds, Derek Lee, Vladdy Guerrero, etc etc etc...doesn't get better than that. Now if only the pitching can mature enough to live up to their potential. Maybe...just maybe...90 wins? Nah...I don't want to jinx it.

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About the bloggers
A Baltimore native, Dan Connolly has been covering sports for 14 years, and baseball and the Orioles for 10 seasons, including the past six with The Sun. His first year covering baseball on a daily basis was Cal Ripken Jr.'s final season as a player. It's believed that is just a coincidence.

Steve Gould is an assistant sports editor for The Sun, overseeing Orioles coverage. The Columbia native joined The Sun as a sports copy editor in 2006 after graduating from the University of Maryland.

Peter Schmuck has been covering baseball for a lot longer than Steve Gould has been on this earth. He is now a general sports columnist, but has been a beat writer covering three major league teams (the Dodgers, Angels and Orioles) and also spent a decade as the Sun's national baseball writer. If you want more of his insight on the Orioles and other sports issues, check out his personal blog -- The Schmuck Stops Here.

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