After a rough first inning, Grayson Rodriguez settled down and pitched five innings in his major league debut. Rodriguez allowed two runs in a 30-pitch first inning and pitched four scoreless innings after that.
Rodriguez gave up just two more hits and struck out five. In the first inning, he allowed his only walk and threw a wild pitch among the 83 he threw.
After he left, Austin Voth (0-1) allowed three runs in the sixth as the Texas Rangers defeated the Orioles, 5-2, at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas on Wednesday.
Rodriguez was officially recalled on Wednesday morning. He was told he would be joining the Orioles from Triple-A Norfolk and immediately flew to the Dallas area.
“They told me I was going up. They pulled me off to the side, and it was pretty hectic after that,” Rodriguez told reporters after the game. “I was just speechless … It happened quick. The emotions were definitely high.”
Rodriguez was sent to Triple-A Norfolk as spring training ended on March 27th after posting a 7.04 earned-run average. In his first game for the Tides on March 31st, he allowed four runs, three earned, in four innings. He hadn’t completed four innings during any Grapefruit League start.
“It was disappointing,” he said. “The goal was to be on the big league team. Just going after it, getting consistent work is what it’s all about. Thankfully, it was a pretty quick turnaround, so we were able to come out here and make a start.”
After executive vice president/general manager Mike Elias explained his reasons for sending Rodriguez down, it seemed unlikely that he would be back so soon.
“Spring training is about getting your work in, sometimes,” Rodriguez said. “You don’t really focus on the results. It’s all about a buildup to the regular season, so I guess the work that we put in got us here.”
Rodriguez walked his first batter, Marcus Semien. He got Corey Seager to hit into a force play and retired Nathaniel Lowe on a liner to short. After a wild pitch sent Seager to second, Adolis Garcia doubled to score Seager, and Josh Jung singled to score Garcia.
“I got a little nervous he might not get out of it,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “He was really excited, a little jumpy … He mixed his pitches very well after that first inning.”
“There was a lot of nerves that first inning,” Rodriguez said. “Really couldn’t feel the baseball. Having the first inning, getting it out of the way was pretty special. Going out in the second and being able to get after it. Definitely the second inning felt like a normal game. The first inning I felt like I was on an island.”
Kyle Bradish, who suffered a bruised right foot on Monday night when he was hit by a line drive, went on the 15-day injured list retroactive to Tuesday. Tyler Wells, who was supposed to start Tuesday, pitched five spotless innings in relief of Bradish, and Kyle Gibson threw seven strong innings on Tuesday night.
Hyde said that he hasn’t decided if Rodriguez will get another start. His turn would come on April 11th against Oakland.
“If they want to give me another start, I’ll be ready for it,” Rodriguez said.
The Orioles (3-3) got two runs on two hits against Jacob deGrom (1-0) in six innings, and were hitless in the final three innings. José DeClerc picked up his first save.
In the fifth, the Orioles scored on a fielder’s choice by Austin Hays and an RBI single by Adam Frazier.
After winning two of three against Texas (4-2), the Orioles can enjoy an unexpected day off on Thursday to get settled in Baltimore. The Orioles’ scheduled home opener against the New York Yankees was postponed and will be played on Friday at 3:05 p.m.
Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB
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