The development versus need argument rages on with the Orioles.
Not inside the walls of the warehouse or the manager’s office. Among fans and media.
The baseball gods keep poking the Orioles. Keep challenging their plan and their resolve.
Don’t want to rush the young pitching prospects? Well, what about a lockout and short spring training and injuries? The tandem compromise and uncertainty with the fifth spot?
And of course, the arms in Triple-A that are more enticing than the dessert menu at Cheesecake Factory.
The Orioles haven’t budged. Grayson Rodriguez made his second start with Norfolk on Thursday night and allowed two runs and three hits in five innings with no walks and eight strikeouts, giving him a 2.00 ERA and 0.556 WHIP in two games with one walk and 15 strikeouts in nine frames. Kyle Bradish spun four scoreless innings with no walks and six strikeouts in his first start in 2022 and 22 appearances in Triple-A.
Rodriguez is the top pitching prospect in baseball per some national outlets. Bradish is ahead of him in the race to the majors based on his experience and output in spring training.
Give the people what they want, and Bradish is in an Orioles uniform for his next start. Do what’s perceived as best for him in the long term, and he could dress again with the Tides while the club finds other ways to plug holes.
If this is an irritant, seek comfort in knowing that Bradish, Rodriguez and DL Hall are expected to start for the Orioles in 2022. Together in the same major league rotation. Plugging holes will be replaced by the task of making room for them. And perhaps someone else if the prospect train chugs into Baltimore again.
There’s an expression that says, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.” It also could apply to baseball gods. They’re a lot less forgiving. But this is the Orioles’ vision.
They didn’t see John Means experiencing left forearm tightness in his first and second starts, then going on the injured list yesterday with a left elbow strain. They didn’t see Dean Kremer straining his oblique while warming in the bullpen for his season debut.
I didn’t see Matt Harvey returning to the organization, but he isn’t close to being an option.
Jordan Lyles can eat innings. Hope he brought a big spoon.
Asked about Rodriguez and Hall last month, Means said, “That talent level, we don’t see very often.” The waiting is the hardest part.
Means is waiting to find out how much he’s being paid this summer in an arbitration hearing. His side filed at $3.1 million, the Orioles at $2.7 million.
This is why you have an agent. So you can focus on pitching and pain.
Tyler Wells makes his second major league start tonight after allowing four runs and three hits in 1 2/3 innings at Tropicana Field. He made six appearances against the Yankees as a Rule 5 rookie and surrendered four runs and five hits with 10 strikeouts in 7 2/3 innings. He also notched a save.
Right-hander Jameson Taillon starts for the Yankees after holding the Blue Jays to two runs in five innings and striking out six. He’s allowed four earned runs (five total) with one walk and 17 strikeouts in 11 innings in two career starts against the Orioles.
Cedric Mullins and Anthony Santander homered off Taillon in his 2021 and Yankees debuts. Ryan Mountcastle homered against him in an August game.
Bruce Zimmermann closes out the series Sunday afternoon, the Orioles fly to the West Coast to play the Athletics and Angels before heading to New York for the third stop in a dumb scheduling idea, and we’ll learn together what the Orioles are doing with the rest of their rotation.