Position player and starter needed for tonight

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The Orioles will begin tonight’s game against the Nationals with a four-man bench after they bring up a player from Triple-A Norfolk.

An extra outfielder. An extra infielder. Probably not third catcher, though it’s less risky to put Adley Rutschman and Robinson Chirinos in the same lineup.

Infielder Jonathan Araúz would make sense as an extra utility player, but he hasn’t been in the minors for the minimum 10 days after the Orioles selected him off waivers from the Red Sox Wednesday afternoon.

Infielder Rylan Bannon makes sense and there's nothing holding him back.

The 40-man roster is full. A spot could be opened by transferring reliever Travis Lakins Sr. onto the 60-man injured list, where he’d join John Means, Chris Ellis and Alexander Wells.

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Orioles option Baumann to reduce pitching staff

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Reliever Mike Baumann has been optioned for a third time.

The Orioles sent Baumann to Triple-A Norfolk after yesterday’s game, meeting today’s noon deadline for teams to trim pitching staffs to 13.

Major League Baseball is limiting the number of pitchers, leaving 13 position players on the roster until Sept. 1. The Orioles must make a corresponding move before Tuesday night’s game against the Nationals at Camden Yards.

Per the new collective bargaining agreement, teams can’t option a player more than five times after May 2 or he’s exposed to waivers. Baumann has been optioned twice during this period.

Baumann tossed a scoreless inning yesterday against the Rays, allowing two hits and striking out a batter. He broke camp with the Orioles but hasn’t avoided the shuttle, appearing in seven games and allowing six earned runs (seven total) with 13 hits, six walks and nine strikeouts in 12 innings.

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Orioles rely again on resiliency and are rewarded

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Yesterday’s 2-1 win over the Rays was just so … Orioles.

The bad news about starter Jordan Lyles, scratched in the morning with a stomach virus. An unsavory bullpen game. Trey Mancini’s removal from the lineup with more hand soreness.

So many reasons to fold, so much stubbornness.

They should've lost to a team that beat them in 18 of 19 games in 2021 and was starting Corey Kluber. Instead, they took an early lead and held onto it.

The Orioles were outhit 9-4. They used seven pitchers, none for more than Austin Voth’s 2 2/3 innings. Voth made his first start since June 6, 2021. His longest outing before yesterday was three innings on June 1, 2021.

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Defense backs bullpen in impressive 2-1 win (updated)

Defense backs bullpen in impressive 2-1 win (updated)

There’s nothing dads love more than fundamentals. They preach it in Little League. They drill it on empty fields on Saturday afternoons. 

There were probably plenty of beaming fathers in the Baltimore area pointing at their televisions Sunday, turning to their sons or daughters, and saying, “See? Fundamentals.”

The Orioles (30-38) played a clean, fundamental game and turned several phenomenal defensive plays to help Brandon Hyde navigate an unwelcome bullpen game and beat the Rays 2-1 on Father’s Day at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

It started in the top of the second inning, when a picture-perfect relay from right fielder Ryan McKenna to second baseman Rougned Odor to catcher Adley Rutschman turned a Vidal Bruján single into an inning-ending tag play. The Orioles, already leading 1-0 on a first-inning home run by Anthony Santander, kept the Rays off the scoreboard.

It continued in the sixth, when Odor scooped a Taylor Walls grounder from the dirt and underhand lobbed it to first baseman Ryan Mountcastle to get Mike Baumann out of a jam. Another scoreless frame, and a 2-1 lead preserved.

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Lyles out with stomach virus, O's going with bullpen game

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The Orioles’ innings eater won’t be eating much today.

Jordan Lyles was scratched from his scheduled start against the Rays this afternoon due to a stomach virus, manager Brandon Hyde told the media before Sunday’s game. Reliever Austin Voth will start in Lyles’ stead, but isn’t expected to go more than a couple innings.

“We found out at about 7:30, 8 o’clock this morning,” said Hyde. “With the off-day tomorrow, that’s the one positive thing of this is that we do have a day off tomorrow, so I can use a lot of bullpen guys today and give them a day off tomorrow.”

Lyles hasn’t missed a turn in the rotation yet this season, making 13 starts and compiling a 5.10 ERA as Hyde’s veteran workhorse.

Voth, who was claimed off waivers from the Nationals on June 7, has pitched only 3 ⅓ innings with the Orioles, all in relief, surrendering two runs and striking out three. The 29-year-old righty started 22 games over five seasons in Washington.

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Lyles scratched from start (updated)

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The Orioles scratched Jordan Lyles for today’s start against the Rays and replaced him with Austin Voth.

An explanation is coming later.

Lyles hasn’t gone more than 5 1/3 innings in his last four starts, and his ERA has risen from 4.10 to 5.10. No word on how today’s switch impacts the rotation moving forward.

The Orioles are off Monday.

Voth has made three relief appearances and allowed two runs in 3 1/3 innings since the Orioles claimed him off waivers from the Nationals.

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Orioles reflect on being a father

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Nothing that I do in my life, nothing that’s accomplished in a press box or television booth, is more fulfilling and important to me than being a Girl Dad. My daughter is my best work.

I lost my father to cancer three years ago. He was the ideal role model. I miss him terribly and try every day to live up to his standard. To reach the bar that he raised.

Being on road trips to cover the Orioles satisfied me professionally but also hurt my heart. Six weeks at spring training felt like an eternity, no matter how much I loved Fort Lauderdale. I’d fly home and go directly from the airport to my daughter's classroom, where the teacher waved me in like a third base coach.

She’d jump in my arms – my daughter, not the teacher - and ask whether I brought T-shirts for her instructors and friends. Of course I did. I just had to take out a second mortgage.

I lifted her up when she was in fifth grade and she whispered into my ear, “Put me down, put me down.” I was embarrassing her in front of her friends. My little girl was growing up.

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Orioles rally again but lose 7-6 (updated)

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Ryan McKenna dived across home plate today in the second inning, hopped to his feet with hands clenched into fists, and yelled. The energy that’s been running through this team reaching high voltage.

The unfortunate part of the day for the Orioles was how quickly the Rays flipped the switch. The familiar part was the comeback by a team that stubbornly refuses to submit to its apparent fate.

The Orioles had to settle for another moral victory. They’d rather get the kind that's reflected in the standings.

Rookie Kyle Bradish surrendered four runs in the top of the third inning and two more in the fifth before the Orioles stormed back to tie the game in the sixth. Dillon Tate loaded the bases in the ninth, and Harold Ramírez’s sacrifice fly gave the Rays a 7-6 win at Camden Yards.

A walk, single and hit batter set the stage for Ramírez, who lined to right fielder Trey Mancini.

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Elias on draft, pitching prospects, Harvey and lawsuit

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Orioles executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias returned late last night from the draft combine in San Diego with the same group of names on his board, which will be carried into upcoming meetings intended to whittle the list down to one.

The Orioles hold the first overall pick for the second time in four years.

“The combine was a great event. I’m very glad that we have that event now as a league,” Elias said today during a dugout session with the local media.

“Obviously, we are working with a group of five, maybe six, but probably five players at this point. … There’s a lot of information that comes in late leading up to the draft, and so it’s not responsible to pare the list down until you get all that. And also, I think we’re going to have advocates in our scouting department and in our front office for each of those players. So, we’re going to have a nice, lively debate.”

A position player is going to be chosen. No pitchers are deemed worthy of the pick.

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Right-hander Joey Krehbiel on returning today to the active roster

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The Orioles bullpen underwent more changes today as right-hander Joey Krehbiel returned to the active roster and righty Logan Gillaspie was optioned back to Triple-A Norfolk. Krehbiel’s last game was June 2, and he's been out since with right shoulder discomfort and inflammation. But he has been throwing while not active and said today he feels very ready for his return to the active roster.

Krehbiel, who has pitched in the majors with Arizona, Tampa Bay and the Orioles, was claimed by Baltimore off waivers from Tampa Bay on Sept. 21, 2021. He was off to a good start to his season before his IL stint, going 2-3 with a 2.74 ERA over 22 games and 23 innings. He has recorded a 1.130 WHIP and has allowed just one run in seven innings over his last six appearances.

“I actually only took maybe like five or six days off in a row not throwing,” he said in the O’s clubhouse pregame. “Just getting in the training room and (they were) taking care of me every day. I have thrown every day. First day I threw, just to play catch, then took a day off and for like the last 10 days, about eight of those days I’ve thrown every day.

“Threw off the mound first time just 15 fastballs, felt great. Next couple days off, then threw like an aggressive full-on bullpen. All my pitches and it felt even better than before. So twice (off the mound) I guess.”

And after pitching well for the Orioles to start this season, waiting out his IL time of 15 days was not easy.

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Orioles option Gillaspie (plus lineup and notes)

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The Orioles activated reliever Joey Krehbiel from the 15-day injured list and optioned right-hander Logan Gillaspie to Triple-A Norfolk. Gillaspie was informed of the move last night.

Krehbiel, who was sidelined with right shoulder tendinitis, has a 2.74 ERA and 1.130 WHIP in 23 innings. Gillaspie has appeared in 11 games with the Orioles and allowed five earned runs (six total) and 15 hits in 10 1/3 innings.

Gillaspie was charged with four runs and five hits Monday in 1/3 of an inning in Toronto.

Adley Rutschman and Cedric Mullins are on the bench today.

Austin Hays is leading off and serving as the designated hitter. Trey Mancini is in right field, Ryan McKenna in center and Anthony Santander in left.

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More adjustments coming to Orioles' roster for multiple reasons

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The Orioles are discussing construction possibilities for their roster next week with teams allowed to carry only 13 pitchers. They get a fourth bench player as the forced tradeoff.

Monday’s off day delays the club’s decision, but it’s coming.

Joey Krehbiel is expected to be activated today from the injured list, which removes a reliever from the bullpen. Someone else must go by Tuesday. And the Orioles eventually need a starter to replace Bruce Zimmermann, who was optioned Thursday afternoon.

A fifth starter isn’t required until June 25, so no rush.

Jorge López, Dillon Tate, Félix Bautista, Cionel Pérez and Keegan Akin are safe, and Bryan Baker probably also fits into that category.

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Kremer cruises, Rutschman rips RBI single, Orioles blank Rays 1-0 (updated)

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Dean Kremer’s season was put on hold before it began, an oblique strain while warming during the opening series causing him to disappear from the bullpen, active roster and sight.

He wasn’t around much while rehabbing at the spring training complex and in the minors.

He isn’t leaving the rotation as long as he’s displaying improved command and confidence. Maybe get used to seeing him every five or six days.

Kremer shut out the Rays over six innings tonight, tying his career high, in the Orioles’ 1-0 victory at Camden Yards. Manager Brandon Hyde removed him at 82 pitches.

Adley Rutschman’s second single of the night in the bottom of the seventh inning scored Ryan Mountcastle, who doubled into the bullpen corner, and put the only run on the board.

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Hyde on Santander and Akin returning, Stowers' opportunity, and more

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Anthony Santander is in right field tonight for the Orioles. Keegan Akin is in the bullpen. The competitive disadvantage from their absences in Toronto has been resolved.

Perhaps until the Orioles are in Toronto again. They make two more trips in 2022.

Unvaccinated players are denied entrance into Canada. Santander and Akin went on the restricted list, and the Orioles returned substitute players Kyle Stowers and Rico Garcia to Triple-A Norfolk.

“We knew going in,” Hyde said. “Gave a couple guys an opportunity because two guys couldn’t go, and if that presents itself again, we’ll take it like we just did.

“We’re not the only team that this has happened. It’s happening to most teams that go up there. I’ve talked to them and it’s their choice and I leave it up to them. They’re grown men, they’re going to make their own decisions. I can give them my opinion, but people make their own decisions. You try to persuade or give them my thoughts on it, but it’s ultimately up to them.”

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Santander and Mancini included in Orioles lineup

Santander and Mancini included in Orioles lineup

Outfielder Anthony Santander and reliever Keegan Akin are back on the 26-man roster as the Orioles begin their next homestand with three games against the Rays. Santander is playing right field.

Outfielder Kyle Stowers and reliever Rico Garcia were sent back down to Triple-A Norfolk after yesterday’s game.

Trey Mancini returns to the lineup and is playing first base. He missed the last three games in Toronto with swelling in his right hand.

Adley Rutschman is catching and batting sixth.

Ryan Mountcastle is 11-for-27 (.407) with four homers, eight RBIs and eight runs scored during his six-game hitting streak.

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Leftovers for breakfast

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TORONTO – Ramón Urías went on the 10-day injured list Saturday with a strained left oblique and isn’t close to being ready to jump back in the lineup.

Urías is making progress, but at a pace that disappoints him.

“I feel a little bit better,” he said yesterday. “Obviously, I feel like it’s going slow. The good thing is, every day it’s getting a little better.”

There isn’t much for Urías to do except receive daily treatments.

“I think I would have a better idea when I start swinging and see how it feels with the swing,” he said.

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O's use big inning to pound Kevin Gausman, split Toronto series (updated)

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TORONTO – In their first matchup against former Oriole right-hander Kevin Gausman today, the O's scored a third-round knockout. Well, a third-inning departure anyway. They treated their 2012 top draft pick (No. 4 overall) rudely today as they beat the Toronto Blue Jays 10-2 to split the four-game series.

The Orioles went 4-4 on this road trip and return home at 28-37 to host the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday night. This was the first series of three or more games where the O’s won or split versus Toronto since Aug. 1-4, 2019.

The Orioles will head home with some momentum, having won four of the last six games and they are 6-5 over the last 11. They are 14-13 the past 27 games and 9-7 in their past 16 AL East games. They are 7-7 this month.  

Gausman began the outing at 5-5 and his 2.67 ERA ranked ninth-best in the American League. Signed by the Blue Jays in December to a five-year deal worth $110 million, he allowed two earned runs or less in eight of his 12 starts this season. Gausman also recorded seven quality starts.

But it was quality at-bats that did him in during the top of the third inning. They scored six runs on seven hits to open a 7-0 lead at Rogers Centre. The O’s scored six runs in an inning three times at Camden Yards in early May. But they had never done it on the road until today.

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Hyde on Zimmermann's option, Rutschman on first homer

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TORONTO – Bruce Zimmermann was one of the Orioles best rotation pitchers through mid-May with a 2.72 ERA. But when his ERA when up to 9.79 over his last six starts, the Orioles felt they need to make a change.

And today the local Baltimore pitcher was optioned back to Triple-A Norfolk and right-hander Mike Baumann was added to the Orioles roster for the series finale with Toronto.

Zimmermann allowed three long homers and six runs on 11 hits in 4 2/3 in last night’s loss in 10 innings at Rogers Centre. His changeup looked solid early in the outing but that didn’t hold up and he has now allowed 33 earned runs over 30 2/3 innings and 15 homers in his last six games since May 19. Opponents have an OPS against him of 1.176 in that span.

“Zimm’s had a handful of tough starts and we just feel like he needs to go down, kind of do a reset a little bit,” manager Brandon Hyde said today about the move. “Work on some things mechanically, work on some things from a command standpoint with some of his pitches. He got off to a really good start this year. It just hasn’t translated to some of these last starts. The best thing for him is to go down and kind of pitch in some lower pressure situations facing Triple-A lineups and hopefully we see him back here soon.

“He’s getting hurt on a lot of offspeed pitches that are catching too much plate in the thigh area where he is giving up homers. For me he’s got to be able to command his fastball a little bit better, especially with these right-handed dominanted lineups. … Be able to pitch both sides of the plate with his fastball and get the depth back with his changeup. That is something he is going to be working on.”

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Orioles option Zimmermann to Triple-A Norfolk

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TORONTO – Left-hander Bruce Zimmermann has lost his spot in the Orioles’ rotation and active roster.

The club optioned Zimmermann to Triple-A Norfolk today and recalled reliever Mike Baumann, who was on the taxi squad.

Zimmermann surrendered three more home runs last night in a 10-inning loss to the Blue Jays, increasing his total to 17 in his last seven starts and 18 for the season, tied with Miami’s Elieser Hernández for most in the majors.

The month of June hasn’t brought any relief to the Baltimore native. He’s allowed 18 runs and 31 hits in 15 innings.

Zimmermann’s ERA has risen from 2.72 on May 14 to 5.94. He began the season with a scoreless streak of 14 2/3 innings.

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Orioles lineup vs. Jays

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TORONTO – If the Orioles are going to gain a split of their four-game series against the Blue Jays, they’ll need to bounce back quickly from last night’s 10-inning walk-off loss.

Adley Rutschman is batting fourth as the designated hitter this afternoon after smacking his first major league home run and collecting his first two RBIs. He also doubled for his fourth multi-hit game.

Kyle Stowers is on the bench, with Ryan McKenna starting in left field.

Trey Mancini remains out of the lineup with swelling in his right hand.

Ryan Mountcastle has homered in consecutive games for the fifth time in his career. He’s hit 12 career homers against the Jays, most versus any opponent, and is batting .346 (38-for-110) with four doubles, 12 home runs, 21 RBIs and a 1.109 OPS in 28 games.

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