Baltimore Orioles Top 10 Prospects: Michael Ohlman


Feb 22, 2014; Sarasota, FL, USA; Baltimore Orioles catcher Michael Ohlman (64) poses for a picture during photo day at Ed Smith Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Over several weeks we will work our way through the Baltimore Orioles Top 10 Prospects in the farm system, counting down from #10 to #1 as they are listed on the team’s site. We’ll begin with #10 prospect Michael Ohlman, a catcher.

Ohlman will turn age 24 in two weeks. He was the 11th-round pick of the Orioles in the 2009 draft out of high school in Bradenton, Florida. At 6’5” and 215 pounds, he is in the league of Matt Wieters for size – unusual for a catcher, presenting both natural assets and liabilities.

Ohlman is on the Orioles 40-man roster, and in terms of team depth should probably be thought of as fourth behind Wieters, Caleb Joseph, and Steve Clevenger. There is also the lurking presence of the #3 overall prospect Chance Sisco.

The Orioles are giving Ohlman every chance to succeed, selecting him to play in the Arizona Fall League the past two seasons, for example. This past year he was 10-for-41 for the Glendale Desert Dogs, though his best experience there may have been playing for former big-league catcher Lance Parrish.

Michael Ohlman had an especially good season in 2013, winning the Carolina League batting title with a .313 average. This followed a 2012 season that include a .304 average in 59 games for the DelMarVa Shorebirds (low A) team. The 2012 year also featured a Spring Training auto accident and a 50-game suspension relative to the substance policy.

Moving up to AA Bowie this year, it was more of a grind with a .233 average in 113 games. He had up and down periods of play. Similarly to Caleb Joseph, there is so much to learn and absorb as a developing big-league catcher that there are going to be times where it is difficult to handle the pitchers while also becoming a consistent offensive threat as well.

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  • For 2015, Ohlman is going to need to continue to develop his defensive skills while also becoming more consistent as a hitter and building his power potential.