Dylan Bundy keeps it rolling (plus a Grayson Rodriguez note)

Orioles right-hander Dylan Bundy had another good outing last night. By now, he is probably getting used to pitching without a lot of runs to work with. Bundy threw eight scoreless innings on three singles against the Boston Red Sox. No runner even got to third base against him during his 104-pitch outing.

Leaning more heavily than usual on his fastball, Bundy saw Andrew Benintendi go 2-for-2 against him and the rest of the Boston lineup went 1-for-24. Bundy did not get a decision in the Orioles’ 2-0 loss in 12 innings. He reduced his ERA to 3.66. That is the lowest his ERA has been since May 2.

Over his last two starts against the Mets and Red Sox, Bundy has thrown 15 scoreless innings on six hits with five walks and 12 strikeouts. Opposing batters are hitting .120 (6-for-50) against him in those two games.

Bundy throws his four-seam fastball on average 48 percent of the time, but last night he threw 66 fastballs for 63 percent of the time against Boston. He threw his slider 29 times last night. This was his fourth scoreless start of the year and his second in his career versus Boston.

“I felt all right,” Bundy said. “I felt like me and Chance (Sisco) had good command of the fastball today, especially in to most of those guys. So we were able to play off that.”

In three starts this year against Boston, Bundy is 0-2 but with a 2.29 ERA, 21 strikeouts over 19 2/3 innings and a 1.07 WHIP. He’s doing that against the team that began last night leading the majors in runs, average and extra-base hits and was second in homers, slugging and OPS.

Since he failed to get a single out and gave up four homers and seven runs on May 8 versus Kansas City, Bundy has allowed 10 earned runs in 43 innings over six games. His ERA is 2.09 in that span and he’s thrown seven innings or more four times.

He’s certainly in the midst of a very good run of solid pitching right now.

“You could say that. Body feels good, arm feels great. Just taking the ball every five days and trying to give our team a chance to win,” Bundy said in his usual understated manner. You just won’t get him to brag on himself.

The O’s rotation has now put together six quality starts over the last seven games and has 10 in the past 12 contests.

Feeling a draft: The point has already been made, but is worth making again The Orioles definitely got the guy they coveted with the No. 11 pick in the First-Year Player Draft a week ago yesterday when they selected Central Heights (Texas) High School pitcher Grayson Rodriguez. To say the least the club is excited about his upside and vast potential.

Rodriguez-Throws-High-School-White-Sidebar.jpgHe’s got size, velocity and a strong work ethic. The 6-foot-5 Rodriguez reshaped his body over the winter and it helped him get stronger and throw pitches somewhat effortlessly it seemed to him and gain velocity.

“Starting in September, I began going to a workout place in Tyler, Texas,” Rodriguez explained. “They also worked out big leaguers like Brandon Belt, Michael Kopech and Josh Tomlin. I went there from September all the way up until we started practice for high school season in January. We got on a pretty strict training program. I had a personal trainer. I would drive up after school and see him two to three times per week. We just trained and got after it.

“I started to see it when we started our throwing program. The ball felt different coming out of my hand. It was jumping out of my hand and it felt like half the effort it did before to throw it as hard as I wanted to. I definitely didn’t have to try to throw hard. It just kind of came a lot more natural. I worked with a pitching coach down in Houston, David Evans, to work on my mechanics. Everything just worked well.”

Rodriguez has agreed to a signing bonus of $4.3 million with the Orioles. We reported here last Wednesday that he would reach agreement with the Orioles for a bonus just under the slot amount for his pick which was $4,375,100.

The Orioles are expected to soon announce that Rodriguez has signed and then are likely to send him to Florida for an orientation and to throw some bullpens in front of club instructors before he heads to pitch in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League. The signing of Rodriguez could be announced this week, maybe even before the Boston series is over.

Update: The Orioles have announced that they have agreed to terms with Rodriguez, who will appear at a press conference at Camden Yards later this afternoon.

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