NEW YORK - Wilson Betemit also arrived at Yankee Stadium today, joining Xavier Avery, Luis Exposito and Steve Tolleson as Friday additions to the expanded roster. Betemit will be activated from the disabled list after playing two rehab games at Double-A Bowie, where he hit a grand slam last night.
The group of call-ups will expand. These are just the guys who reported early.
Zach Britton is expected to start on Sept. 4. Jake Arrieta, Tommy Hunter and left-hander Zach Phillips also figure to be promoted. Hunter will throw an inning at Bowie before joining the Orioles in Toronto.
Also keep in mind that Jason Hammel will be coming off the disabled list and likely start on Sept. 6. Left-hander Troy Patton will be activated at some point next month, and the Orioles are hopeful that Jim Thome will eventually come off the disabled list.
Outfielder Jai Miller was promoted from Double-A Bowie to Triple-A Norfolk to fill an opening on the Tides’ roster.
“I did it once in Milwaukee this year,” Wolf said. “It’s different, but I think it’s exciting. I knew that was going to be the role going into it. A big part of my decision was coming here and helping the team, which I think has a great chance of winning. Being in the playoffs the past two out of three years, I realized that’s what it’s all about, to play September baseball when it actually means something and every game’s important. No matter what the role is, that’s exciting.”
Being a reliever will force Wolf to make a few adjustments.
“Literally, you always have to be ready,” he said. “I think the hardest adjustment for me is the physical routine that I go through every day. As a starter, I come to the park and I know this is my long run day, this is my lift day, this is whatever I do for my shoulders. As a reliever, if you haven’t pitched in a while, you have to be ready to pitch every day.
“Obviously, there are times when, if you pitch two or three innings, you know you’re not going to pitch that day and you can do a bigger workout. It’s definitely a change to the routine, but you have to be ready for that.”
The Orioles weren’t the only team that wanted to sign Wolf after the Brewers released him last week. The Athletics were one of his more aggressive suitors. But he chose a club that hasn’t made the playoffs in 14 years.
“That’s one of the most exciting things about it, to have that opportunity to help out a team in that situation,” he said. “This is one of the teams that’s the best team that nobody is talking about. In the mass media, you don’t hear much about the Orioles. It’s an exciting team. They’re finding ways to win every day. It’s pretty exciting to see a team that ... it’s hard to really put your finger on what it is that makes them win, but as long as they win, that’s all that matters.”
Another reason that Wolf chose the Orioles was because he knew Brewers pitching coach Rick Kranitz “liked his experience in Baltimore.”
“But the biggest decision for me,” Wolf said, “was just going to a team that had a chance to win.”
Perhaps this move will serve as a fresh start for Wolf, even in a relief role. He’s 3-10 with a 5.69 ERA and 1.57 WHIP in 142 1/3 innings.
“This has been the most frustrating year of my career, because I look at I’m probably throwing a slight bit harder than I was last year,” Wolf said. “I feel better physically than I did last year. And I know my stuff isn’t that much different. I think my location hasn’t been as good. It’s been a nightmare year, no doubt.
“To me, I look at going to Baltimore and going to a new team as maybe a silver lining in a nightmarish year. It’s exciting to go to a new team and kind of have a rebirth and try to help out in a new role. I just talked to Rick (Adair) and I told him however you need me to help out, I’m ready to do whatever you need me to do.”
Wolf is wearing No. 28.
For the Yankees:
Derek Jeter SS
Nick Swisher 1B
Robinson Cano 2B
Curtis Granderson CF
Eric Chavez 3B
Raul Ibanez LF
Russell Martin C
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Jayson Nix DH
Hiroki Kuroda RHP