Fry forcing Orioles to keep him on roster

MINNEAPOLIS - Orioles manager Buck Showalter has wanted to go with an eight-man bullpen and join a growing trend in baseball. It isn’t always feasible, whether due to injuries or other roster complications, but they will continue to carry an extra reliever today while closing out their road trip.

They’ve gone with three left-handers on occasion, and with Richard Bleier out for the season following lat surgery, Paul Fry has a chance to stick around for a while.

He could have a direct impact on Donnie Hart, who’s been riding the shuttle.

Tanner Scott registered another scoreless inning yesterday, his second in three days, and he’s struck out four batters. Zach Britton increased his trade value yesterday by again retiring the side in order with a strikeout, his fastball climbing to 97 mph. He faced three batters Wednesday in Philadelphia and induced three ground balls.

Fry-Throws-Black-Sidebar.jpgFry already made his mark in Minnesota by retiring all seven batters he faced Friday night and striking out four batters.

“I think I’m in a groove right now and I’m just going to keep doing what I do and hopefully good things will come,” he said.

“I was getting ahead, getting ahead and commanding the strike zone and throwing my slider.”

Fry was 3-0 with a 2.84 ERA and 1.11 WHIP in 15 games with Double-A Bowie and registered a 3.47 ERA and 1.11 WHIP in 13 games with Triple-A Norfolk before the Orioles selected his contract. He allowed nine earned runs, walked four batters and struck out 29 in 23 1/3 innings.

In his major league debut, Fry turned in 1 2/3 scoreless innings against the Angels at Camden Yards and he retired left-handed hitting Odúbel Herrera, the only Phillies batter he faced Tuesday night, to strand three runners.

Of his four strikeouts Friday night, two came against right-handed hitters and another versus a switch-hitter.

“I like to say that I can get righties out just as good as lefties,” he said. “I don’t want to be a guy comes in just for lefties. I want to be a guy who can finish the inning and go multiple innings if I have to.”

The Orioles will try today to avoid being swept in a four-game series in Minnesota for the first time in club history. Alex Cobb, who left the bases-loaded mess for Fry, will try to notch his second win since May 18 and third this season.

Cobb has made three career starts against the Twins and allowed only four runs in 16 1/3 innings. The sample sizes are small, but Joe Mauer is 3-for-5 with two doubles.

Jake Odorizzi made his 2018 debut against the Orioles on opening day and allowed two hits in six scoreless innings. He’s 5-4 with a 4.42 ERA and 1.334 WHIP in 19 games (18 starts) against them.

Jonathan Schoop, who seems to be heating up, is 11-for-32 (.344) with four doubles and a home run against Odorizzi. Adam Jones is 14-for-46 (.304) with a double and two home runs.

Chris Davis is 7-for-36 (.194) with two doubles, three home runs and 14 strikeouts.

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