Orioles retain interest in finding more pitching

The Orioles and the rest of baseball are facing another trade deadline in less than two weeks. It just doesn’t get the same play as the one that falls on July 31.

We’re past the non-waiver trade deadline, which brought starter Jeremy Hellickson and shortstop Tim Beckham to Baltimore. Any deal completed now must involve a player who’s passed through waivers.

A claimed player can be pulled back. Otherwise, the teams can attempt to work out a deal.

The Orioles remain in the market for pitching because, as a wise man or woman once said, you can never have enough of it.

duquette-at-opacy.jpg“We’ve been working every day to try to add to the ballclub,” said executive vice president Dan Duquette. “We’ve had several conversations, but we haven’t been able to put anything together.

“We’re taking a hard look at the guys we’ve got in the minor leagues, see who can help us later on in the season. We’ll see what we can do. We still have some pretty decent depth within the organization. Some of the guys at Triple-A are starting to play pretty well and putting up some decent seasons. Some of the guys at Double-A, there are some guys there that might be able to help us, too.”

It’s another call to arms, whether inside or outside the organization.

“Like everyone that’s in the race, we’ve been looking for pitching depth,” Duquette said. “But there are about 16 to 18 teams looking for pitching depth and there’s not a lot of availability this time of the year, so that’s why we’re keeping a sharp focus on some of these guys we have in the minors.”

Tanner Scott is one of them. The fireballing left-hander has a 2.21 ERA in 21 starts at Double-A Bowie, with 38 hits allowed and 76 strikeouts in 61 innings. He’s still working to refine his secondary stuff and reduce the walks - he’s issued 42 - and the Orioles are determining whether his future is in the rotation or bullpen.

The Orioles must protect Scott in the Rule 5 draft later this year.

Left-hander Chris Lee has shifted to the bullpen at Triple-A Norfolk and he’s allowed one earned run in his last five outings over 17 1/3 innings. He’s stretched out to where he could start or be used in relief.

Left-hander Wade Miley gets the start tonight as the Orioles open their series against the Athletics after splitting four games in Oakland earlier this month. Miley faced them on Aug. 10 and allowed an unearned run and three hits in seven innings in a 7-2 win.

Miley followed it up in Seattle by allowed three runs and throwing 95 pitches in 4 2/3 innings in Seattle. Pretty much defined the Orioles season.

One step up, one step back.

Miley owns a 1.33 ERA in four career starts against the Athletics, with four earned runs (five total) in 27 innings.

Right-hander Chris Smith is making his seventh start. He opposed Miley in Oakland and allowed five runs and seven hits in six innings.

Trey Mancini homered twice off Smith that night. Adam Jones and Mark Trumbo also took him deep, as the Orioles twice went back-to-back off him.

Mancini is 2-for-26 in his last seven games to lower his average to .282.

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