Photo Credit: USA Today

Get to Know the Baby Birds: Branden Kline

March 04, 2019 - 10:10 am

By Joe Schiller

As the Baltimore Orioles begin their rebuild, one of the main goals will be to develop their home-grown talent.

It doesn’t get any more home-grown than relief pitcher Branden Kline.

The Frederick, Maryland native is a promising prospect who’s battled injuries and overcome obstacles since joining the Orioles’ organization in 2012 and he’s primed to crack the major league roster this season.

Kline, 27, was a second-round pick by the Orioles in the 2012 MLB Draft. He began in Aberdeen and worked his way up through the organization to Double-AA Bowie by 2015.

Amid an impressive season with the Baysox, posting a 3-3 record along with a 3.66 ERA, injury struck. Kline underwent Tommy John surgery and missed the entire 2016 season.

A setback during one of baseball’s most grueling injuries became even tougher when Kline had follow-up surgery in 2017, missing two consecutive seasons.

Kline rehabbed, worked his way back to playing with Single-A Frederick in 2018 and was lights out. He posted a 1.31 ERA with the Keys, quickly earning a promotion back to Bowie and the same production followed. In 32 games, Kline was difficult to face and finished with a 1.80 ERA and 48 strikeouts in 32 games.

In order to keep him away from Minor League free agency, Kline earned a promotion to the Orioles’ 40-man roster in October of 2018. He’s proven his case to be a legitimate bullpen piece this year with a strong Grapefruit League season.

Kline joined 105.7’s The Big Bad Morning Show this morning live from Sarasota, Florida.

He’s more than just a feel-good story, Kline could take on an important role in the back-end of the bullpen this season.