Wei-Yin Chen improved to 4-0 with a 2.45 ERA in his first season pitching in the U.S. He retired 10 straight Yankees tonight. He’s now gone seven innings or more in three of his last four starts. He’s 3-0 with a 1.98 ERA in four starts at Camden Yards.
“Compared with my last outing, I think this outing was just fine,” he said through his interpreter. “I was just fine. But because I am doing good today, it’s because I have a real good catcher behind me.”
We’ll get to Matt Wieters in a minute.
Chen made his major league debut against the Yankees on April 10 and didn’t get the decision after allowing two earned runs (four total) in 5 2/3 innings.
“The first time, the debut, I was so nervous,” he said. “This time, I was just like, ‘I’ve had this experience already,’ so everything was fine to me.”
Asked about the importance of beating the Yankees, Chen replied, “It doesn’t matter which team. If I can keep pitching good and we can get those Ws, that’s the best part.”
Chen held the Yankees to two runs, on Curtis Granderson’s controversial home run, in seven innings.
“I pitched pretty good today,” he said. “Everything was down, everything was in its zone, so everything was good.
“If I can pitch seven innings, that’s good for our team.”
OK, now it’s Wieters’ turn.
“I’ve been impressed with him every start he’s gone out there, because it doesn’t matter who the opponent is, what the situation is, he just goes out there and pitches his game, which is why he’s successful. He goes out there and knows that if he pitches well, he’s got a good chance to get a win,” Wieters said.
“His fastball command early, he was real sharp early. Last time we played them, he wasn’t as sharp early, he got sharp later in the game. Tonight, he was sharp early, which allowed him to get deeper in the game.”
Wieters said he’s been able to communicate with Chen. They speak the universal language of baseball.
“It’s been fine the whole time,” Wieters said. “He understands pitching, he understands pitches, so it’s real easy to go out there and slow him down a little bit. It’s real easy because of how well he knows what he’s doing out there on the mound.”