DENVER—Gabriel Ynoa will be the Orioles’ starter on Monday, when the Orioles return home to play Detroit. Manager Brandon Hyde, who decided to put struggling Dan Straily in the bullpen for now, said that Ynoa was the best choice.
Ynoa has seven major league starts, including four for the Orioles in 2017.
“He’s more stretched out than our other guys,” Hyde said. “He’d been in a long relief role for us, so we’re going to give him an opportunity to start on Monday.”
Ynoa, who is 0-1 with a 5.60 ERA in nine appearances, has thrown at least three innings three times this season with a high of 3 1/3 on April 26 at Minnesota. He’s thrown as many as 62 pitches.
Presumably, Straily will be available in long relief if he’s not used on Saturday or Sunday.
Straily is 1-4 with a 9.09 ERA in nine appearances, eight starts. He thinks some time in the bullpen will help him.
“Absolutely, when you sit back and look at things, it’s honest self-evaluation,” he said. “Getting through four innings at a time, that’s not what we’re trying to do. I haven’t gotten this far in my career going four innings, either. The stuff’s not sharp. It’s kind of bland right now.
“We’re trying to get that crispness back to the pitches. Hopefully, maybe a couple of shorter stints will be able to get me back sharp and get back me back and get me doing to what I’m supposed to be doing.”
Straily’s first appearance for the Orioles this season was out of the bullpen, but because Alex Cobb was injured, he was forced to start before the team had planned to use him in that role. He had three relief appearances with Cincinnati in 2016.
Hyde said that the Orioles considered bringing up a fresh arm for Saturday’s game, but decided against it. They might add another pitcher in the next few days.
Givens struggling: Hyde is going to rest reliever Mychal Givens for the time being. In his last three appearances, Givens has allowed eight runs on seven hits in 2 2/3 innings, walking four. His ERA has gone from 2.75 to 5.64.
“Mike’s been pitching in tight spots and high-pressure situations,” Hyde said. “His command hasn’t been what he’d like the last few times out and I’ve got to take care of him.
“I give it to him. He’s a competitor. He tells me every day, ‘I want to pitch. I’m good,’ but at the same time I have to think of what’s best for Mychal Givens … I want to make sure we’re doing this right.”
Davis on bench: Chris Davis didn’t start for the second straight game. Davis, who is in a 1-for-19 dive, has seen his average drop from .191 on May 17 to .171. He has struck out his last four times, and doesn’t appear to be tracking the ball.
“I’m not sure. I’m day-to-day right now,” Hyde said of his plans for Davis. “I’m giving him a breather as of right now. We’re going to go from there. Not today, not tomorrow. I just want Chris to feel good. I care about Chris. I just want to put him in a position to have success.
“I want to give him breaks when he needs it, and we have an awesome, awesome relationship. I just want to do what’s best for him.”
Davis started the season 0-for-33, but was able to raise his average to .193 on May 10, the highest it had been since the end of the 2017 season.
“He had a few weeks there where he had good at-bats and was swinging the bat well,” Hyde said.
“The last two weeks or so, he’s just fallen back a little bit into indecision, possibly in between pitches. Late on the heater, out front of off-speed, Maybe pressing a little bit. I want him to relax, and I want him to focus on taking good at-bats. Sometimes, the best thing is to get away from it for a little while.”