When I look at Chris Tillman, I see a prototypical young pitcher – tall, good-sized and a guy who should throw in the high-90’s.
However, during his tenure with the Baltimore Orioles, Tillman has been a bust. Overall, he has been an extraordinarily inconsistent pitcher and fans – along with executives – have been wondering “will this guy ever figure it out? Is Tillman a major league-caliber pitcher, or a Four-A guy?
Tillman, as we all know came to Baltimore in the Erik Bedard trade with the Seattle Mariners several seasons ago. He was considered a centerpiece of that trade at the time - along with Adam Jones - and pegged as part of the future with the Baltimore Orioles.
While Jones has won a Gold Glove, been an All-Star, and is an emerging all-around player in the sport; Tillman has struggled in the organization and has seemingly shuffled between the majors and Triple-A umpteen times.
Tillman has had problems being efficient on the mound with his pitches, making it to the fifth inning, walking batters and confidence on the mound.
He does not throw very hard – maybe in the high 80’s to low 90’s – so being precise with his command is key. So far, Tillman has failed to show that.
It drove people crazy to see Tillman pitch like an ace in one game, and look painful the next. Now, one has to wonder has his time run short with the Orioles?
Overall, he has a 5.58 ERA and has a 7-15 career major league record.
That being said, Tillman is still remarkably young at age of 23; however, it seems like he has been in the Orioles organization forever.
Is it time to give up on him and send him on his way via trade?
I’m not sure what manager Buck Showalter and Dan Duquette are thinking; however, right now I would think it would be hard for him to make the team on Opening Day. I’d say keep Tillman with the Orioles right now as an organizational guy in the minors. They have to hope that he can dominate consistently in the minors before he even makes the major league roster.
In reality, I do not think Tillman will be a viable part of the Orioles future. It might make sense to deal Tillman and give him a fresh start.