CLEARWATER, Florida—What’s happening? Kyle Bradish becomes the first pitcher to make three spring training starts as the Orioles host the Minnesota Twins at Ed Smith Stadium at 6:05 p.m. on Friday night.
Bradish allowed one run on two hits in five innings in his first two starts.
He’ll be opposed by Joe Ryan.
Austin Voth will start for the Orioles on Saturday when the Orioles face the Toronto Blue Jays in Dunedin. He’ll be opposed by Chris Bassitt. It’s Cole Irvin’s day to throw, but he’ll throw on the back fields instead.
Manager Brandon Hyde said DL Hall, who has yet to pitch due to a back injury, could still make the Opening Day roster.
“It is realistic,” Hyde said. “He just won’t be fully built up [to a] five-inning, six-inning starter standpoint, but we could carry him still. He’ll get some appearances in major league spring training games before we break if everything goes well before we break if everything goes well from now until then.”
Hall was pleased with how he threw in a bullpen session on Wednesday.
“Moving in the right direction,” Hall said. “Just trying to take it day-by-day and feel better each and every day whether it’s one percent or 25 percent better.”
Hall said while he won’t be ready to start when the season begins on March 30th, it won’t take him long.
“Physically I could be ready, though obviously not stretched out as a starter by that time. Hopefully not too many weeks after that, I’ll be ready to be a starter,” Hall said.
Terrin Vavra, who was scratched before Saturday’s game with left shoulder discomfort could return to the lineup on Friday.
“He had a full workout on the field today,” Hyde said. “Check in in the morning with him and if he feels good, I’ll probably have him in there tomorrow.”
Keegan Akin has allowed two hits in three scoreless innings in two appearances this spring, which pleases Hyde.
“He’s throwing the ball as good as anyone this spring,” Hyde said. “Great life to his fastball. I know he’s been working on his offspeed all spring. I think his fastball is up to 95, gets it [in] on hitters, thrown a ton of strikes. Off to a great start. We’re going to continue to multi-inning him all the way through.”
Hyde says that he could have both Akin and multiple candidates for the starting rotation in the bullpen.
“I think the more multi-inning guys we have in the bullpen, the better,” Hyde said. “Especially in April when starters aren’t fully built up and you don’t want to back-to-back guys out of the bullpen as much early. To have guys throw multiple innings is really valuable, especially early.”
The Orioles reassigned 12 players to minor league camp after Thursday’s game. The most notable were infielders Coby Mayo and César Prieto. The others reassigned were right-handers Wandisson Charles, Ofreidy Gómez, Morgan McSweeney, Kade Strowd, Cole Uvila, Chris Vallimont and Ryan Watson, catcher Ramón Rodriguez, infielder Curtis Terry and outfielder Robert Neustrom.
That leaves 59 players on the spring training roster.
According to a report in the Sports Business Journal, the Orioles are seeking to sell field naming rights to Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The report says that the Orioles are asking for $6-8 million annually to name the field.
The Orioles announced that Chairman and CEO John Angelos and Governor Moore toured the Battery Atlanta, which surrounds Truist Park, home of the Atlanta Braves. The Orioles hope that a similar entertainment area could be build around Camden Yards.
What happened? Tyler Wells allowed a run on two hits in 2 2/3 innings, striking out five as the Orioles lost to the Philadelphia Phillies 7-6 before 7,414 at BayCare Ballpark on Thursday.
In his two starts, Wells has given up four runs on seven hits in 4 2/3 innings.
“I definitely think I came out with a little bit more aggression kind of right out of the gate, something that as a whole I’ve talked about,” Wells said. “Just attacking guys, staying in the strike zone but still kind of, I guess, getting ahead of guys and being able to put them away. Very happy with the result today but still more work to do.”
Wells gave up a leadoff home run to Bryson Stott and left the game when he reached his 55-pitch limit.
“That’s what happens whenever you call behind 2-0 to the first guy of the game and you kind of throw him a cookie and try to get ahead,” Wells said. “He hit the ball well. Even the second time he got it well and it went out to the warning track. So, not taking anything away from him. That was my own doing. I think that definitely kind of helped me get into that aggressive mode real quick.”
Rule 5 draft pick Andrew Politti, who had not been scored upon in his first three spring innings, allowed two-run home runs to Edmundo Sosa and Aramis Garcia. Sosa also homered against Bruce Zimmermann, who gave up two runs in three innings.
Joey Krehbiel, who allowed eight runs in 1 2/3 innings in his first two games, pitched a spotless eighth inning.
“He was the highlight of the day on the mound for me,” Hyde said. “Joey looking way more aggressive, on the attack, some really good changeups. The fastball had great life to it. I know he scuffled early, but good to see him come back and show who he is.”
Jordan Westburg played second base and was 2-for-2 with a sacrifice fly. He’s batting .300 this spring.
“I felt like I put together two good at-bats against [Aaron] Nola, which I was really happy about,” Westburg said. “He’s a top of the line guy. For me to get that experience off him was pretty cool. It was pretty special and definitely helps my game a little bit comparing myself to what it’s going to be there.”
Westburg was the organization’s top minor league player last season, and he’s been learning a lot this spring.
“It’s been a blast for me,” he said. “Getting to be around guys like [Adam] Frazier, [Jorge] Mateo, [Ramón] Urías, Gunnar [Henderson], guys with experience who’ve had success and then just picking their brains, watching them. I know that wherever I start, I’ll be better for being at this camp and being surrounded by great players.”
Non-roster first basemen Josh Lester and Ryan O’Hearn each were 2-for-3. Neustrom hit a two-run home run.
What’s up with? Logan Gillaspie was 1-0 with a 3.12 ERA in 17 games for the Orioles in his first major league season. He knows he faces long odds to make the team.
“They’re probably going to be dominant, so I’m going to go out and do my thing and hopefully I make it,” Gillaspie said.
Gillaspie said his time with the Orioles have been well spent.
“When I first got called up and debuted, I threw a lot of 0-2, 1-2 strikes, offspeed strike to strike,” he said. “I tried to be too fine. The longer that I was up here, I was like, I can throw a changeup that hits the right-handed batters box to a lefty, and they’ll still probably swing. Pitch placement, I would say, is the thing that I worked on.”
What’s what? Dean Kremer beat O’Hearn 2 games to 1 in the Orioles’ clubhouse ping pong tournament before a large group of cheering teammates.
Kremer jokingly said that he delayed reporting to Team Israel for the World Baseball Classic was to participate in the tourney.
“For sure. The tournament is one of the most important things here,” Kremer said. “I’m glad I pulled it out.”
What’s the word? “I haven’t looked at one stat this spring except for plate performances. I put very little stock in what their numbers are like, honestly. It’s more the quality of the at-bat or controlling the strike zone. It’s not a huge sample, so I’m able to remember that.”-Hyde on the unimportance of spring stats.
What’s the number? 10. Wells struck out Rhys Hoskins on a 10-pitch at-bat in the third inning. He also committed a pitch clock violation when he stepped off the rubber without a runner on base.
“It’s a long, gruesome battle out there, but even in my head I’m just like, ‘Good lord, this guy [Hoskins] is going to keep fouling them off,’” Wells said. “But it was a great at-bat by him and definitely happy that I came out on top.”
What’s the record? 5-7-1. The Orioles play the Minnesota Twins at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota at 6:05 p.m. on Friday night.
Call for questions: I’ll be answering Orioles questions next week. Please email them to: [email protected].