Feb 25, 2015; Sarasota, FL, USA; Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Dylan Bundy (49) pitches a ball during spring training workouts at Ed Smith Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Dylan Bundy came to the Baltimore Orioles when he was drafted fourth overall in the first round of the 2011 amateur draft.
Bundy came to the Orioles just an 18-year-old phenom, fresh out of high school in Owasso, Oklahoma. The stories about the training that both Dylan and his older brother Bobby did are now well-known. The father had the two of them doing grueling workouts, including boxing, to strengthen their rotator cuffs.
Bundy also scared some teams off, who were concerned about the grueling workouts, including the long toss regimen that Dylan did.
Going first in the 2011 draft was Gerrit Cole to the Pirates, who is now an All-Star. Danny Hultzen went second to Seattle, Trevor Bauer third to Cleveland, Bundy, and then Bubba Starling to the Kansas City Royals. Bundy and Sterling were straight out of high school.
For perspective, other people drafted in that first round include Anthony Rendon (6th), Archie Bradley (7th), Francisco Lindor (8th), Javier Baez (9th), George Springer (11th), Taylor Jungmann (12), Jose Fernandez (14). Sonny Gray and Joe Ross also went in the first round of that draft.
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Now, all of these players, and pretty much anyone who has played in the majors, has played more than Bundy.
Bundy played in two games in 2012 for the Orioles, pitching exactly 1.2 innings. The Orioles thought this young 19-year-old was the future.
But, he never pitched in 2013 after having Tommy John surgery and has not been the same since.
In 2014, Bundy pitched in 41.1 innings in Single-A Aberdeen and High-A Frederick. Bundy did not pitch terribly, but he also did not have the same velocity as he did before the surgery.
In 2015, Bundy pitched in only 22 innings for AA Bowie. Dylan’s ERA was fairly high, but the strikeouts were back and the velocity was higher as well.
So the O’s decided to send Dylan to the Arizona Fall League to get some work in. Now, Bundy is shelved again with a forearm injury. However, Dan Duquette has said the injury is ‘nothing serious.’
I’m not holding my breath. Bundy has continued to have injury issues. But, in 2016 the team has to have him on the 25-man roster … in the major leagues. In some ways, it will be like carrying a rule 5 player on the roster. Bundy has only pitcher 1.2 innings above Double-A Bowie … in the majors in 2012.
The potential is obvious, but can Bundy ever be the player he was drafted to be. Only time will tell.