Triple-A Norfolk pitcher Rick VandenHurk has been named the International League’s Pitcher of the Week for the period from Aug. 15-21.
VandenHurk tied for the league lead with two wins and 18 strikeouts, and he posted the lowest ERA (0.75) among all pitchers with multiple starts.
VandenHurk fanned 13 batters in Game 1 of last Monday’s doubleheader against Charlotte. He allowed four hits in six scoreless innings in a 1-0 victory.
Facing first-place Durham on Saturday, VandenHurk allowed only one run - Matt Carson’s homer - and two hits over six innings. He struck out five batters in the Tides’ 3-2 victory.
VandenHurk, 26, has won three of his last four decisions after losing five in a row. He’s 8-13 with a 4.58 ERA in 25 starts, with 136 hits, 39 walks and 103 strikeouts in 147 1/3 innings. He’s allowed 75 earned runs (82 total), including 23 home runs.
The Orioles outrighted VandenHurk in late March after he cleared waivers, making room on the 40-man roster for reliever Josh Rupe, who was later optioned and released. VandenHurk posted a 13.50 ERA in four exhibition games totaling six innings, with nine earned runs (12 total) and 10 hits allowed, along with eight walks.
Perhaps the Orioles will find room for him on the 40-man when rosters expand in September.