New Orioles – or newly acquired Orioles, anyway – Wade Miley and Steve Pearce met with the local media Tuesday afternoon.
They both were placed on the 25-man roster Tuesday while relievers Odrisamer Despaigne and Tyler Wilson were sent back to Triple-A Norfolk. That gives the Orioles a four-man bench again.
Here are some of the things Miley, Pearce and executive vice president Dan Duquette said Tuesday.
Duquette on Miley, whom he acquired Sunday night from Seattle for lefty Ariel Miranda: “Wade Miley pitched a great game over the weekend against the Cubs as a Mariner. We had discussions ongoing and I wasn’t so sure we were going to be able to do that after he pitched so well on Saturday. But we did and here he is. He’s a workhorse. He’s pitched over 200 innings a few times, excellent command of four pitches, he’s got a good pickoff move. And he loves to compete. We hope he helps stabilize our pitching rotation and is a key piece we hope to help us advance to the playoffs.”
Duquette on Pearce, whom he acquired from Tampa Bay on Monday for catching prospect Jonah Heim: “Steve Pearce, think this is our fifth time together, where he’s parted and come back to the Orioles. Had a terrific year in Tampa, we are glad to have him back. He gives us excellent defense, power when he’s in the game and when he’s not in the game he gives us a real strong bench. And we are glad to have him back.”
Duquette on both: “These are two workman-type players. Guys that like to grind it out in the American League East. They’ve got ability and we are real glad to have them …with the club.”
Miley on being the subject of trade rumors: “Obviously, the rumors were flying around and knew there was a chance I might get traded. But I just tried to stay focused in the time I was with the Mariners and pitch for them and then this happens. I feel very fortunate.”
Pearce on the nerve-wracking last few seconds of the deadline when he learned he was traded: “Definitely was. I was looking to get some work in, ready to take the field but we’re not ignorant to it. We know there are trades going on. So, waiting. I was ready for it to be all over, to tell you the truth. So I can start getting focused on where I needed to be.”
Miley on pitching in the AL East again after doing it last year for Boston: “It’s going to make for a fun last two months of the season. It’s going to be competitive and that’s what we play the game for: to have that challenge. And I think we’re going to be up for it.”
Pearce on leaving the Rays for the Orioles: “We were struggling down there in Florida, so to go from worst place to first place, it’s definitely a better situation. I’m excited, especially with the group that’s in there right now. I’ve been playing with those guys forever, so I’m looking forward to picking up where we left off and paving our way toward the playoffs.”
Miley on going from the Mariners to the Orioles: “I obviously struggled early in the year. When I first found out (about the trade), I was excited, to go from a third-place team to a first-place team overnight. There’s nothing wrong with that. So, hopefully, I can just come in here and not screw that up.”
Duquette on having Miley through 2017: “There’s an option for 2018, too. We needed a left-handed pitcher to complement our rotation. And Wade’s a workhorse. He’s pitched in the American League effectively. He’s got all the qualities to help our club, and not just for this year, for next year.”
Duquette on pursuing Miley for years: “We tried to acquire him in a trade with Arizona. And he had a terrific year. He was, like, second in Rookie of the Year and made the All-Star team, and he’s had some good years since then. He’s got some more good baseball ahead of him and I think there’s a good fit here and a good opportunity to help our club.”
Duquette on the thin market for pitching: “Teams that are out there competing to get into the playoffs are looking to add, and they’re looking at a very limited pool of major league pitchers to add to their club. So it was certainly a seller’s market. Fortunately, we had another left-handed pitcher in Miranda that Seattle liked that allowed us to acquire Wade’s contract. But it was tough.”