Albert Suárez gets call to start for Orioles against Twins -
Rich Dubroff

Albert Suárez gets call to start for Orioles against Twins

Photo Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports


BALTIMORE—The Orioles chose 34-year-old right-hander Albert Suárez to replace Tyler Wells for Wednesday afternoon’s start against the Minnesota Twins. They selected Suárez’s contract from Triple-A Norfolk.

It will be Suárez’s first major league game since September 26th, 2017 for the San Francisco Giants, and his first start since September 23rd, 2016, also for San Francisco. Wells was placed on the injured list Tuesday because of right elbow inflammation.

“We needed a starter today, and he is in line,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “This gives us the best chance to win against a pretty much right-handed [hitting] club. There are some lefties sprinkled in there.”

Suárez spent five years in Japan and South Korea before the Orioles signed him last September. He received an invitation to spring training, where he had a 5.17 earned-run average in five games but struck out 19 batters in 15 2/3 innings.

“I love the way Albert threw the ball in spring training for us,” Hyde said. “He pitched there right to the end, till we set the roster. He had an outstanding camp. The strike-throwing ability, sits in the mid-90s. He showed good secondary stuff. He pitched against a lot of ‘A’ lineups in spring training.

“As we talked about a lot so far this year, you can’t really judge everything on spring training, but his stuff is really good, and he’s a really cool story, so we’re happy to give him the ball today.”

On March 5th, Suárez struck out seven against the Phillies in Clearwater.

“He showed really good stuff throughout camp,” Hyde said. “From his first bullpen on, he opened our eyes from the stuff that was coming out of his hand. You see 96, and you see him throw his fastball by guys  with life and then the secondary stuff he wash throwing for strikes, also. He kept doing it every five days. We were excited about it. This is why we have major league depth.”

Suárez was 1-1 with a 5.87 ERA in three starts for Triple-A Norfolk, striking out 17 in 15 1/3 innings.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Suárez’s nearly six years since his last major league game is the longest for the Orioles since reliever Danny Boone went nearly eight years between major league appearances. Boone appeared for the Orioles on September 16th, 1990 after pitching for Houston on September 30th, 1982.

To make room for Suárez on the 26- and 40-man rosters, the Orioles designated catcher David Bañuelos for assignment.

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