The Orioles have cleared room on their 40-man roster by outrighting right-handed pitchers David Hess, Branden Kline and Kohl Stewart and utilityman Andrew Velazquez to Triple-A Norfolk.
Stewart, who opted out of the 2020 season for medical reasons, was on the Covid-19 60-day injured list and not on the 40-man roster.
On Wednesday, catcher Bryan Holaday became a free agent.
The 40-man roster is at 32.
Hess has elected free agency, which was first reported by MASNsports.com and confirmed by an industry source. He was 4-20 with a 5.86 ERA from 2018-2020 with the Orioles. Hess was the team’s fourth-round draft choice in 2014.
Kline, who can declare for free agency because he was outrighted previously, was 1-4 with a 5.48 ERA in 37 games in 2019 and 2020. The Frederick native was the Orioles’ second-round pick in 2012. In three games this past season, Kline had a 1.80 ERA.
Velazquez, who played second base, shortstop, left and center field, hit .159 with three RBIs in 40 games.
The Orioles soon will activate Trey Mancini and infielder Richie Martin from the 60-day injured list and must decide whether they’ll pick up the $3.5 million option on shortstop José Iglesias for 2021. The decision on Iglesias must be made five days after the World Series.
Minor league signings: The Orioles re-signed six players to minor league contracts: catcher Taylor Davis, right-handed pitchers Marcos Díplan, Mickey Jannis and Ofelky Peralta, infielder Ryan Ripken and utilityman Stevie Wilkerson.
Wilkerson’s re-signing was previously reported.
Davis and Wilkerson have major league experience. Davis was at the Bowie alternate site throughout the 2020 season. Wilkerson missed the season because of a fractured finger.
Notes: Right-handed pitcher Carter Baumler, the Orioles’ fifth-round draft pick in 2020, underwent Tommy John surgery on Thursday. The news was reported by MLB.com and confirmed by an industry source … Iglesias is one of nine shortstops nominated for the All-MLB Team. He’s the only Oriole on the ballot.
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