Bowie Baysox (Class-AA) LHP Keegan Akin struggled in his first start of the season. I was there on that chilly Saturday and wrote this about that start.
Since then, Akin has been nothing short of stellar. Akin has had three starts since that 2018 debut and in those games has thrown 17.0 innings to a 2-1 record. He had a 2.12 ERA, 1.24 WHIP and struck out 13 while walking 6 during that time. Additionally, Akin held Eastern League hitters to a .238/ .300/ .302 slash line in those three games; he allowed just 2 extra-base hits as well.
Akin’s latest game (April 25th vs. Richmond) was a gem. He threw 6 scoreless innings that day while allowing three hits; he struck out 5 and walked 2 as well. He has been so dominant lately that he has allowed just one lone run in his past 12 innings pitched.
On the season Akin is 2-2 in 4 starts (21.0 innings) with a 3.43 ERA, 1.33 WHIP and .241 batting average against. He has struck out 19 and walked 9 while allowing 6 extra-base hits (2 homeruns).
Akin, the Baltimore Orioles second round draft pick in 2016, is living up to the expectations that accompanied his selection. He is pounding the zone and throwing strikes. He is throwing strikes at a rate of 63% and his strikeouts per 9 innings pitched are 8.1; Akin is striking out slightly over 2 (2.11) batters for every walk issued.
Akin’s best pitches are his fastball and his slider and he is using them quite effectively. His fastball sits in the low to mid 90 mph range and I have seen him make hitters look foolish with his curveball.
There is so much to like about this 23 year-old southpaw; he is a power pitcher who throws strikes and limits base runners. Akin has the profile of a pitcher who will have success at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. I don’t see him there this year but at the very least, with continued dominance in the Eastern League, Akin could make the move to Norfolk (Class-AAA), possibly at the All-Star break.
Akin is back on track after that first start this season and I see absolutely no reason for him to get off track. As I have gone on record as saying, he is the real deal. He will keep his name in future pitching option conversations for the Orioles and should make his OPACY debut in the next few years, that is, as long as he continues pitching like he has so far. I see nothing that indicates he won’t. Good things are ahead for Akin and the Orioles.
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