Bowie right-hander Mike Wright has recently turned a good season into an even better one by going deeper into games and continuing to lower his ERA for the Double-A Baysox.
Wright is 9-2 with an ERA of 3.46 over 22 starts. He ranks 1st in the Eastern League with an .818 winning percentage. He is tied for fourth in wins, fifth in strikeouts and ninth in the league in ERA.
But over his last six starts, Wright has pitched to an ERA of 2.27. Over 39 2/3 innings he has walked just five and fanned 38. He has pitched seven innings or more in three of his last five starts.
"I think he is understanding himself better," O's director of player development, Brian Graham said. "He's learning to read swings. He's understanding the value of his changeup. He's maturing and that happens with experience.
"His stuff is good, it's just a matter of commanding the ball. This is just his second full season in baseball. He's still young in terms of experience."
The 23-year-old Wright throws a fastball, curve, slider and changeup. He has pitched at 92 and 93 mph touching 94 and 95 at times.
Orioles director of pitching development Rick Peterson said Wright continues to make improvements and take steps forward with Bowie.
"Mike has really matured as a pitcher," Peterson said. "He understands himself so much better. Pro baseball is so different from college. Mike came in as a pure stuff guy, high-end velocity with late sink and nice slider and curve, plus changeup.
"Mike has settled in and matured mentally, emotionally and physically. He understands now to get deep into the game it's about getting early contact. Pitching aggressively to the bottom of the strike zone to get that contact. He's made just tremendous strides."
Peterson noted that in his most recent start, when Wright gave up just one run and five hits over seven innings against New Hampshire, that he got nine ground outs and just two in the air.
"He goes out to implement his game plan and he realizes if he executes that at a high level that he can do exceptionally well. That is where he has really come into his own. It's that moment in guy's careers, when they get that, that they take off. It's really special watching where he is right now," Peterson said.