First baseman Travis Ishikawa received the news this afternoon that the Orioles designated him for assignment to make room for pitcher Jair Jurrjens. He took it in stride, knowing that it was a distinct possibility.
“They needed another arm,” he said.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen now. They have a few days to try to trade me, and then if they can’t trade me, I go through the waiver process and see if anybody claims me. If they don’t, I can either accept my assignment to Triple-A or become a free agent. There’s nothing I can really do. I’m not really worried about it.”
Ishikawa, 29, went 2-for-17 in six games with the Orioles. He’s a left-handed hitting first baseman, which limits his opportunities with Chris Davis on the roster.
The Orioles selected Ishikawa’s contract after he filed the paperwork to opt out of his contract. They’ve been unable to work out a trade.
Ishikawa would have been designated Sunday, with second baseman Brian Roberts taking his place on the roster, if the Orioles hadn’t needed a reliever today.
“I had a feeling,” Ishikawa said. “Obviously, Chris is by far one of the best players I’ve ever seen in a given year, especially up close and personal. It is what it is. Maybe if I could have put together some better at-bats, they could have found a different way of using me and keeping me, but I didn’t do what I was supposed to have done. And they’re in a tight spot. They need the extra arm for tonight. It kind of made me the odd man out anyway.
“I’ve been through this process before. I understand this game is a business and there are no hard feelings. This is a good group of guys. I would have liked to have been with them longer, but it is what it is.”
Jurrjens, 27, went 3 1/3 innings Wednesday for Triple-A Norfolk and is available tonight in relief. He didn’t receive a decision in his only start for the Orioles on May 18 against the Rays, allowing four earned runs and six hits in five innings. He’s 5-5 with a 4.06 ERA in 14 starts for the Tides.
The Orioles could choose to option Jurrjens back down to Norfolk on Sunday while activating Roberts from the disabled list. Roberts arrived in the clubhouse this afternoon.
Left-hander Tsuyoshi Wada was not a candidate to be recalled today. The Orioles want him to continue starting for Norfolk.
In other news, the Orioles still expect outfielder Nolan Reimold to join them on their flight to Chicago on Monday. They will have to make another roster move before Tuesday night’s game against the White Sox.
Wei-Yin Chen is starting tonight at Double-A Bowie. If it goes well, he could be activated from the disabled list and start Thursday in Chicago or Friday in New York.
If he pitches Thursday, he could make three starts before the All-Star break.
Showalter said Kevin Gausman or T.J. McFarland could make a start next week, depending on Chen’s status. Lots of moving parts, as he likes to say.
Wilson Betemit is making slow progress in his return from a Grade 2/3 tear of the PCL in his right knee. He wanted to be activated shortly after the break, but there’s no projectable date for his return.
Freddy Garcia is scheduled to start Monday night for Norfolk, his first appearance since being re-signed to a minor league contract.
The Orioles remain highly interested in Astros pitcher Bud Norris and have had multiple discussions with the club in recent days, according to an industry source. However, they still haven’t determined exactly what the Astros want in return.
It’s believed to be a lot, which makes the Orioles a long shot to trade for him. But they’re keeping the lines of communication open.
Norris, 28, is 5-7 with a 3.35 ERA in 17 starts. He’s signed through the 2016 season.
For the Yankees
Brett Gardner CF
Jayson Nix SS
Robinson Cano 2B
Vernon Wells DH
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Zoilo Almonte LF
David Adams 3B
Lyle Overbay 1B
Austin Romine C
David Phelps RHP