Left-hander Paul Fry might not make it back to Baltimore.
The Orioles designated Fry for assignment this afternoon and claimed right-hander Beau Sulser off waivers from the Pirates.
Sulser has three minor league options, and he’s reporting to Triple-A Norfolk.
Fry, 29, allowed eight earned runs and nine total with seven walks in 12 innings with the Orioles, and they optioned him Thursday morning while recalling infielder Rylan Bannon and closing out their series in St. Louis. He was much more effective in May with no runs allowed and only two hits in five innings, but it didn't save his job.
Manager Brandon Hyde was using Fry in lower leverage situations and getting better results.
Teams engaged the Orioles in trade discussions for Fry at last year’s deadline, but there wasn’t an urgency to move him. He had a brief stint as the closer, lost his effectiveness and confidence, and allowed 17 earned runs (19 total) with 16 walks in August over seven innings.
The Orioles optioned Fry on Aug. 29 and didn’t recall him after rosters expanded in September.
The Rays were by far his biggest tormentor. Fry posted a 34.71 ERA and 5.357 WHIP against them in nine appearances over 4 2/3 innings.
Sulser, 28, is the younger brother of former Orioles reliever Cole Sulser. The Pirates drafted him in the 10th round in 2017 out of Dartmouth College and finally brought him to the majors this season.
Sulser appeared in four games and allowed four earned runs (nine total) and eight hits in 9 2/3 innings, with six walks and 10 strikeouts. He made three starts with Triple-A Indianapolis and surrendered three earned runs with 14 strikeouts in 12 2/3 innings.
Home runs aren’t an issue with Sulser in the minors. He’s allowed 34 in 329 1/3 innings in five seasons while registering a 4.04 ERA and 1.345 WHIP.
The Pirates designated Sulser for assignment on Thursday, one day after optioning him.
The Orioles traded Cole Sulser and Tanner Scott to the Marlins on April 3 for minor league pitcher Antonio Velez and outfielder Kevin Guerrero. Fry and Scott had been the primary left-handers in the bullpen, as well as best friends.
Fry could be traded or outrighted if he clears waivers. He signed for $850,000 to avoid arbitration and has two options left, which should bring appeal to other clubs.