Hyde says Rodriguez, Wells, Kremer, Irvin will join Burnes in Orioles' starting rotation - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Spring Training

Hyde says Rodriguez, Wells, Kremer, Irvin will join Burnes in Orioles’ starting rotation

Photo Credit: Kim Klement Neitzel USA TODAY Sports

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FORT MYERS, Florida—Manager Brandon Hyde has decided on the five starters who will open the season with the Orioles.

On March 10th, Hyde named Corbin Burnes as the Orioles’ starter for the March 28th opener against the Los Angeles Angels at Camden Yards. Burnes will be making his first start with the Orioles after going 45-27 in six seasons with Milwaukee.

The rotation behind Burnes will be Grayson Rodriguez, who will start Game 2 on March 30th, Tyler Wells. Dean Kremer and Cole Irvin.

As spring training winds down, Burnes is scheduled to start Friday night against Pittsburgh. Wells will start Saturday night against Toronto, and Rodriguez will start Sunday at Minnesota.

Hyde is comfortable with Rodriguez as his second starter.

“Because he did what he did in the second half, he’s shown over a couple-months period that he can do it,” he said. “He can shut down good offenses, make really good starts for us. I want to believe that going into this year that that gave him some confidence, that he learned from some rough outings and also with his good outings that he can pitch up here and he can pitch well.

“I do have confidence that he’s going to get off to a good start for us, and that’s important. Our rotation is a big key for us, and Grayson’s a big part of that.”

Hyde has been impressed with the spring Wells has had.

“He’s throwing the ball great,” Hyde said. “One of our best, if not the best starter in the first half last year. He’s throwing the ball like that right now. We want to start him in Game 3.”

Despite offdays early in the season, Hyde prefers a five-man to a four-man rotation.

“It’s such a long year, and I’d like to give guys extra rest when we can,” Hyde said.

The Orioles still have 45 players on their spring training roster, and though closer Félix Bautista (Tommy John surgery), starters Kyle Bradish (elbow) and John Means (elbow) won’t be on the active roster, that still means that 16 players must be removed before the opener.

“We only have a few days left,” Hyde said. “We’re obviously getting close, so in the next couple of days we’ll start making some tough decisions.”

Hyde confirmed that shortstop/outfielder Jorge Mateo has made the team.

“He offers us flexibility. That’s why we played him a lot in the outfield in spring training,” Hyde said. “He’s done a lot of outfield stuff in spring training to help with our versatility. We haven’t decided yet on [other players]. Mateo is kind of the wild card in that that he can play the outfield, too.”

Hyde also said he expects that Gunnar Henderson will be the primary shortstop this season. “A possibility of moving there, third base, at some point if something arises in a game.”

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