Straily on his bullpen assignment

DENVER - While disappointed that he didn’t produce as a starter, Orioles right-hander Dan Straily understands and approves of his move to the bullpen. However long it lasts.

Manager Brandon Hyde announced yesterday that Straily would pitch in a relief, his availability beginning tonight, rather than make Monday afternoon’s start against the Tigers at Camden Yards.

Straily-Pitch-Orange-sidebar.jpgStraily has posted a 9.09 ERA and 1.990 WHIP in nine games (eight starts) over 34 2/3 innings. He surrendered four home runs in his last outing, pushing his total to 14.

The Orioles signed Straily on April 5 after the Marlins released him. They were hoping that he could work deeper into games and limit the number of relievers used, but he hasn’t completed five innings in his last five starts.

Asked today whether a stint in the bullpen could be beneficial, Straily replied, “Absolutely, absolutely.”

“You sit back and look at things as honest self-evaluation,” he said. “Going out there and only getting through about four innings at a time, that’s not what we’re trying to do. I haven’t gotten this far in my career going four innings a start, either, but the stuff’s just not sharp.

“It’s just kind of bland right now, so we’re trying to get that crispness back to the pitches. Hopefully, maybe a couple of shorter stints will be able get me back sharp and then get me back in there and get back to where I’m supposed to be.”

Straily made his Orioles debut in relief April 7, allowing five runs in 1 1/3 innings against the Yankees, before going into the rotation out of necessity. He hadn’t worked out of the bullpen since making three appearances with the Reds in 2016.

Only 11 of his 151 major league outings have come in relief.

The Reds eased him into the rotation and the Orioles wanted to follow a similar plan before circumstances intervened. One of the indicators that the organization is lacking starter depth at the upper levels of the farm system.

“It was kind of the same blueprint we were trying to do at the beginning of the year for me here for me,” he said, “but obviously, that got cut short with injuries.”

Hyde is expected to reveal Monday’s starter later today, with Gabriel Ynoa and Josh Lucas two of the candidates. The bullpen likely will be called upon early no matter who takes the mound.

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