Survey says: O's yes, Yankees no

Survey says: O's yes, Yankees no
June 24, 2013, 12:15 am

Though the Orioles are coming off a sweep at the hands of the Blue Jays in Toronto, they are still in second place in the American League East and eight games over .500. And if the number of Orioles leading the All-Star voting at their positions — Chris Davis, J.J. Hardy and Adam Jones — is one sign of the esteem the O’s are held in these days, another one comes via a report in the New York Post.

Post columnist Joel Sherman contacted executives and scouts from outside the American League East about how they think the division will play out. Among his 14 responses, 11 of them picked the Orioles to finish first or second. The division-leading Red Sox came out on top, with 13 respondents picking them first or second.

Sherman wrote of the Orioles: “No AL East squad has more prime-aged position standouts, and it shows in the overall quality of its offense and defense. … Chris Davis somehow morphed into Barry Bonds, and Manny Machado might turn out to be better than fellow 2012 rookies Mike Trout and Bryce Harper. … Darren O’Day and Brian Matusz just might be the best righty-lefty set-up combo in the majors.”

But notable in this survey is who isn’t picked to finish atop the AL East — the Yankees. In fact, none of Sherman’s respondents picked New York to finish first or second.

“Injuries have killed them, though being old already and signing old players is a big reason,” a National League general manager said. “It just feels like the early season magic is gone and they’ll settle in at or a hair above .500.”

From an AL scout: “The injuries are obvious, and I don’t like the vibe around this club. Aging vets can’t possibly repeat April’s production, no real leadership/chemistry, and the Triple-A club is awful.  … Seems like this club is starting to look around for someone to save the day, and it’s just not happening this year.”