Pedro Severino and Chance Sisco have become a solid one-two punch at catcher for the Orioles.
Both have provided solid offense, and they’ve gotten better at working with pitchers from behind the plate.
Entering the weekend, Severino is slashing .319/.380/.583 with five home runs and 19 RBIs in 72 at-bats. Sisco is also hitting the ball well, batting .270/.438/.568 with three homers and six RBIs in 37 at-bats.
“Huge improvement on all levels for both of those guys,” Orioles major league field coordinator/catching instructor Tim Cossins said. “You can see the confidence growing and you can see them manage the at-bats. You can see the aggressive approach and they’re working counts. You can see them feeding off each other and you’re just seeing growth as major league players now at different stages of their career.”
With veteran Bryan Holaday (.300/.300/.300 and two RBIs in 10 at-bats) in the mix, the Orioles rank first among all catchers in the American League in OPS (.949). The club has done a much better job at using analytics to help players improve than in past years, and the system has worked especially well with the catchers.
“We built some internal things that are really helping,” Cossins said. “There is a new process in place, they are taking to it and it’s really economized everything for these players. So they’re doing a great job of absorbing information and commanding the game as well as managing their pitching staff. Things are coming into focus for both those guys.
“They’re in a great spot and it’s fun to watch. Fun to be on the bench and listen to the dialogue as we go through these games and watch them grow in those areas.”
Sisco’s turnaround from last season has been remarkable.
In 2019, he batted .210/.333/.395 with eight home runs and 20 RBIs. Sisco is showing much more confidence at the plate and is gaining the versatility to hit anywhere in the lineup. Sisco batted leadoff earlier this week against the Blue Jays.
“He’s not chasing out of the strike zone,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “He’s looking for a pitch he can drive. Love the increased confidence defensively, also. That’s going to continue to improve.”
In addition to the three catchers on the MLB roster, the Orioles have three others working out in Bowie — former first-round pick Adley Rutschman, Austin Wynns and Taylor Davis. Those three players are working hard every day even though there are no competitive games to play.
There should be some heated competition for a roster spot at catcher throughout the next couple of years.
“There is a clear line of communication with the staff in Bowie and they’re doing an outstanding job,” Cossins said. “We’re communicating quite a bit. Adley, in particular — there is an unbelievable structure for Adley to improve with the veterans we have there. … It’s a perfect storm of having the right people at the right place at the right time. It’s a very productive environment and Adley is improving rapidly.”
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