CHICAGO—Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said that starting pitcher Kyle Bradish’ right shoulder began to bother him after a bullpen session this week. The shoulder didn’t improve, and on Friday the Orioles placed the 25-year-old right-hander on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to June 21st, because a right shoulder inflammation.
“Just a little bit of soreness. We’re doing this out of precaution,” Hyde said. “We’re hoping this is just going to be a couple of weeks. He does have some fatigue in there and he’ll take a couple of weeks to get some treatment, be with [head athletic trainer Brian Ebel] and the guys in the training room. Hopefully, he just misses a couple of weeks.”
Bradish, who has a 1-4 record with a 7.38 earned-run average in 10 starts, was scheduled to start Friday night’s game, but Hyde said after Thursday game that Austin Voth would start and that he would move Bradish to Saturday. Then the Orioles decided to play it safe with Bradish.
Spenser Watkins is on the taxi squad for Friday night’s game, and he’ll likely be the starter on Saturday.
“I think there’s a good chance you’ll see him tomorrow,” Hyde said.
Watkins was 0-1 with an 6.00 ERA in eight starts. He was injured in the first inning on May 22nd when Tampa Bay’s Ji-Man Choi lined a ball off his right elbow. Watkins was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk after his time on the 15-day injured list was complete.
He had a 3.52 ERA in three starts for Norfolk. On Wednesday, Watkins pitched a scoreless inning in his start, throwing just 10 pitches before he was removed from the game in case he was needed by the Orioles.
This is Bradish’s first stint in the major leagues, and Hyde isn’t guessing whether his arm is tired because of the difficulty of big league innings.
“It’s tough to speculate,” Hyde said. “I think there are a lot of things going on around the league. The intensity level up here is definitely different, and it can sometime lead to it. It’s hard to put my figure on why the shoulder is a little bit sore. Hopefully, it’s just a little bit of a hiccup and he’s back in a couple of weeks.”
Diplán returns: For the third time this season, relief pitcher Marcos Diplán has been recalled from Norfolk. He has a 1.59 ERA in five appearances.
“I feel very really good,” Diplán said through a translator. “Thank God and the team for the opportunity. It’s a sign that they trust me.”
Diplán was called up for one game on April 18th at Oakland, and he was back for four more from May 25th-31st.
“I still feel good about the whole situation,” Diplán said. “I just want to help the team whenever I’m needed [whether] I’m up here or down there, continue to improve, get better, so they can call me up again.”
Last year, Diplán was 2-0 with a 4.50 ERA in 23 games.
“This year, I’m really concentrating on improving the location of my pitches,’ Diplán said. “So I’m trying to do the best I can with that.”
Praising the defense: Hyde was glowing over the Orioles’ exceptional outfield defense in Thursday night’s 4-0 win over the White Sox. Austin Hays, Cedric Mullins and Anthony Santander each made at least one outstanding play.
“That might have been the best defensive game from an outfield group I’ve seen in the big leagues,” Hyde said. “All three — Santander the play he made [running down a ball near the left-field wall to end the seventh]. Cedric outrunning two balls in right-center. Haysy, the throw to the plate [that prevented a run], the unbelievable [diving] catch on the line. Most of them with runners on base. It was a clinic in outfield defense.”
Notes: Second baseman Rougned Odor is out because a back injury, Hyde said. “His back is just a little bit sore. He does feel better today, though. Hopefully, he’s available off the bench.” … Jorge López, who saved his 12th game on Thursday night has an 0.77 ERA. López has pitched in 30 games and is the first Oriole pitcher with an ERA that low since Zack Britton had an 0.72 ERA in his first 30 games in 2014.