Tag Archive | "Tides"

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Britton primed for Tuesday call-up after strong Norfolk start

Posted on 12 July 2012 by Luke Jones

Opportunity has been ringing like an alarm clock pitcher Zach Britton has slept through for the better part of the last five weeks.

With three-fifths of the Opening Day rotation now working in Triple-A Norfolk and the Orioles needing a starter on Tuesday in Minnesota, it appears the left-hander is finally ready to answer the bell after struggling with consistency upon being activated from the disabled list.

Britton pitched seven shutout innings for Triple-A Norfolk against Lehigh Valley on Thursday, putting himself in position to be recalled for the first time this season. The southpaw allowed four hits, struck out six, and walked none over his 93 pitches of work in the 7-0 victory for the Tides. He also induced 10 groundball outs compared to three fly outs and reportedly showed excellent fastball command in the lower half of the strike zone.

The stellar outing improved Britton’s record to 4-1 and lowered his earned run average to 4.15. Over his last five starts, the 24-year-old has allowed 10 earned runs and 24 hits in 32 innings while striking out 23 and walking 12.

The organization has wanted to see Britton improve his command while continuing to build strength in his pitching shoulder. Now, it appears he’s on the verge of regaining his spot in the Baltimore starting rotation.

Britton would also be working on regular rest Tuesday when the Orioles play the second game of a four-game set against the Twins.

Jason Hammel, Wei-Yin Chen, and Chris Tillman will be the starters against the Detroit Tigers this weekend while Miguel Gonzalez is scheduled to take the ball in the series opener in Minnesota on Monday night.

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Moyer granted release from Triple-A Norfolk by Orioles

Posted on 23 June 2012 by Luke Jones

BALTIMORE — Earlier this month, it looked like 49-year-old pitcher Jamie Moyer would pitch for the Orioles for the first time in 17 years.

Instead, the experiment ended at Triple-A Norfolk after the left-hander asked for and was granted his release on Saturday. The Orioles were hoping Moyer would agree to remain in Triple A a little longer, especially since the club doesn’t need a fifth starter again until next Saturday.

Moyer went 1-1 with a 1.69 earned run average over three starts that covered 16 innings. He struck out 16 without walking a single batter over the three outings.

“He pitched pretty well down there in a short look, and we’re very appreciative of him for giving us that opportunity to look,” Showalter said. “I don’t think anybody would be surprised if he didn’t pitch effectively for somebody.”

With Chris Tillman pitching effectively and Zach Britton pitching better in his most recent outing, Moyer was viewed as a lesser option to help the Orioles. Showalter appreciated Moyer’s work and wanted to offer him the professional respect and courtesy he deserved after agreeing to what was essentially a three-start tryout in which the organization would evaluate him.

In 10 starts made for the Colorado Rockies earlier this season, Moyer was 2-5 with a 5.70 ERA and allowed 11 home runs. He was released on June 4 before being signed to a minor-league deal two days later by Baltimore.

As for other veterans in the Orioles’ minor league system, left-handed reliever J.C. Romero also has an opt-out clause and the organization will have to make a decision by the All-Star Break. Though currently away from Triple-A Norfolk to deal with a personal matter, the 36-year-old Romero has pitched 10 1/3 scoreless innings over 13 appearances for the Tides.

Veteran third baseman Miguel Tejada does not have an opt-out clause, however, and is hitting .248 with no home runs and 17 runs batted in over 121 at-bats for Norfolk. The 38-year-old infielder has just two extra-base hits, both of them doubles.

Left-handed starter Dontrelle Willis was also activated by Norfolk on Saturday and will presumably assume Moyer’s spot in the starting rotation.

Visit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to hear more from Buck Showalter about Moyer’s release and other items prior to the second of a three-game series against the Nationals.


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Your Monday Reality Check-What a difference a week makes?

Posted on 11 June 2012 by Glenn Clark

Perhaps you’re not familiar with WNST.net MLB analyst Allen McCallum. Allen was once the Ballpark Reporter at WNST, covering the Baltimore Orioles on a daily basis. He’s remained with us in the years since then, appearing once a week in studio (currently with Thyrl Nelson on “The Mobtown Sports Beat”) to talk Major League Baseball and Baltimore Orioles.

Allen is a really good dude, but is decidedly un-American in my book. You see, Allen doesn’t like football. I don’t understand it either, trust me. I have every reason to believe he celebrates the 4th of July and enjoys a good slice of Apple Pie, but he loves baseball and just doesn’t care about our national pastime.

Despite this obvious flaw, I’ve maintained a level of friendship and (as much as is possible for someone who I have to imagine may be a communist) respect for Allen. I don’t dislike him, I just don’t understand how someone like him can exist in this country. You see, football is our beautiful game. It’s a game fathers play in the backyard with sons. Baseball is okay when there aren’t real sports to watch, but is clearly inferior to football in every way.

I’m kidding. Well I’m kidding a LITTLE bit anyway.

The reason my lede is about our resident purveyor of Orange Kool-Aid is because Allen likes to make a point during the course of baseball season that is relevant to both sports. As Birds fans have a tendency to freak out over the results of a couple of games (or one game…or a couple of innings…or a single at-bat), Allen likes to send out a reminder that “this isn’t football. There’s 162 games to be played.”

It hasn’t always been good news in Charm City that the O’s have to play 162 games, but the point he makes is relevant. During Ravens season we tend to overreact to one particular game, but we do that knowing that one game reflects roughly six percent of the season. While a NFL team can certainly recover from a stretch of two or three bad games, a bad streak can quickly spiral into killing a quarter of a football season. At the same time, a bad streak of three or four games during baseball season does not even represent the same six percent of the season that one football game represents.

Let me try to step away from math for a second. A single football game is more significant than a single baseball game. But you already knew that.

Seven days ago (which as I type this would have been June 4), there was reason for great concern amongst Baltimore baseball fans. After getting off to a 27-14 start, the Birds were mired in a streak that saw them drop 10 of 13 games. Sitting at 30-24, the Birds had appeared to already be well into their annual “June swoon” and seemed destined to find themselves on their way to the cellar of the AL East.

But something funny happened in the six games that followed. Instead of continuing their free fall, the Birds stabilized. They won two of three against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, then returned home to take two dramatic extra inning contests against the Philadelphia Phillies at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in front of thousands of stunned supporters who had made their way down I-95 from The City of Brotherly Love.

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Britton struggles again in Norfolk loss

Posted on 10 June 2012 by WNST Staff

The Bisons came out with the mentality of making up for their shutout loss Saturday night.

The result Sunday afternoon at Coca-Cola Field was a 4-2 win over the Tides.

The Herd struck first in the bottom of the third.

Bottom half for the Bisons began on back-to-back singles by Sean Kazmar and Corey Wimberly. After that, Brad Emaus hit a bunt to Tides starter Zach Britton to sacrifice Kazmar and Wimberly to second and third with one out.

Fred Lewis delivered with a fly ball single to right to knock in Kazmar and Wimberly and in the process make it a 2-0 Bisons lead.

“Definitely good to see some offense today,” Manager Wally Backman said. “We’ve been missing key opportunities lately so it’s good to get some runs today.”

The Tides although would answer back in the top of the fourth.

After a double by Lew Ford, former major leaguer Miguel Tejada brought in Ford with an RBI single and cut the Bisons lead to 2-1.

In the top of the fifth, Tides tacked on another run to tie the game at 2, courtesy of Bill Hall’s solo shot.

However, the tie ball-game wouldn’t last long. The bottom of the fifth began with a single by Oswaldo Navarro, Kazmar hit a sacrifice bunt to move Navarro to second.

Wimberly followed with a run-scoring double to left to make it 3-2 Bisons.

The Herd tacked on another run in the sixth, this time a solo home run by Rob Johnson.

In relief of Dylan Owen, the Bisons bullpen combined to four and a third innings, allowing two hits and striking out five.

“Our bullpen has been phenomenal lately, especially (Fernando) Cabrera,” Backman added. “He’s built to be a closer so see him deliver the way he is great.”

BISONS NOTES: Fernando Cabrera recorded his 14th save of the season. He is a perfect 14-for-14 in save opportunities…Fred Lewis is four plate appearances short for qualifying for the sixth-highest average (.305) in the IL…Dylan Owen is the third straight starter to last 4.2 innings Sunday afternoon in an outing, with Harvey and Mejia the other two starters.


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Moyer throws five shutout innings in Norfolk debut

Posted on 10 June 2012 by WNST Staff

Jamie Moyer and Brad Bergesen combined on a two-hit shutout as the Tides blanked the Buffalo Bisons 5-0 Saturday evening.

Moyer (1-0) was brilliant in his Tides’ debut, as he yielded one single while striking out five in five innings of work. The 49-year-old, who was signed by Baltimore as a free agent earlier this week, did not walk a batter while throwing 52 of his 84 pitches for strikes.

Bergesen tossed the final four innings of the contest to register his first career save. He struck out one and walked one, and he’s now 2-1 with a 3.00 ERA over his last six outings – five of which have been starts.

Norfolk scored all of its runs in the fifth inning, as the Tides sent eight men to the plate against Jenrry Mejia (0-1). The big hit of the inning was a three-run homer by Lew Ford, his fourth home run of the season.

Brian Roberts and Bill Hall each had two hits apiece for Norfolk.

The two clubs will square off again Sunday afternoon, with first pitch slated for 1:05. Left-hander Zach Britton (1-0, 6.00) will take the mound for Norfolk against right-hander Dylan Owen (3-3, 5.32).

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Orioles recall Hunter, option reliever Gonzalez to Triple-A Norfolk

Posted on 09 June 2012 by WNST Staff


The Orioles today announced that they have recalled right-handed pitcher Tommy Hunter from Triple-A Norfolk and optioned right-handed pitcher Miguel Gonzalez to the Tides. Hunter will start Saturday’s 4:05 p.m. game against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Hunter is 2-3 with a 5.59 ERA (58.0IP, 36ER) in 10 starts for the Orioles this season.

Gonzalez made his major league debut with the Orioles on May 29 at Toronto and appeared in two games, posting a 2.45 ERA (7.1IP, 2ER).

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Tejada continues hot hitting for Norfolk in win

Posted on 27 May 2012 by WNST Staff

Durham plated two unearned runs in the top of the 10th inning, sending Norfolk to a 3-1 loss Sunday afternoon at Harbor Park.

With the score tied 1-1, Henry Wrigley opened up the 10th frame with a grounder to third base, but Miguel Tejada short-hopped his throw into the dugout, allowing Wrigley to advance to second. One out later, Reid Brignac plated pinch-runner Shawn O’Malley with a single to right off of Jon Link (0-2), giving the Bulls the lead. Former Tide Jeff Salazar later added a single to left-center to plate Brignac, extending Durham’s lead to 3-1.

Norfolk starter Jason Berken was extremely effective, but once again was left searching for his first victory of 2012. Berken, who entered the contest ranked 6th in the IL with a 2.50 ERA, allowed three hits and two walks while striking out five in seven shutout innings, lowering his ERA to 2.12.

Sunday was the third time this season that Berken left a game with a lead, only to see the opponents rally against Norfolk’s bullpen.

The Tides scored their only run of the contest in the seventh inning, as Joe Mahoney led off the frame with a walk and scored on a two-out triple by Blake Davis.

Tejada finished 1-for-3 and was hit by a pitch in the contest, and he’s now hitting .375 in seven games since joining Norfolk.

Hideki Matsui had a single in four plate appearances for the Bulls.

The Tides travel to Pawtucket on Monday to start a four-game set with the Red Sox. Zach Clark will be making his first start for Norfolk since being promoted from Double-A Bowie, and he’ll be opposed by right-hander Doug Mathis (3-2, 4.23). First pitch is slated for 4:05.

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Eveland could replace Hunter in Orioles rotation

Posted on 08 May 2012 by WNST Audio

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O’s Rotation Set As Arrieta, Hammel, Hunter, Matusz, Chen

Posted on 04 April 2012 by WNST Staff

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Matusz shelled in latest Triple-A outing

Posted on 21 July 2011 by Luke Jones

For those looking for a bit of good news with the Orioles off on Thursday, they didn’t get it from Brian Matusz.

Coming off an impressive start in which he tossed seven scoreless innings while showing slight improvement in his velocity from what we saw in Baltimore last month, Matusz allowed seven earned runs in 3 2/3 innings of work against the Toledo Mud Hens in an 11-3 loss for Triple-A Norfolk. The left-hander gave up eight hits and three walks before being lifted in the fourth inning for Tides reliever Nick Bierbrodt. Matusz also struck out two hitters.

Though we likely won’t learn what his velocity and overall stuff looked like until Buck Showalter meets with the media on Friday afternoon, whatever he had — or didn’t have — working for him obviously didn’t translate to the box score.

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In his four starts since being optioned to Triple-A Norfolk following a horrendous start against the St. Louis Cardinals on June 30, Matusz has completed fewer than six innings three times and has a 5.40 earned run average in 21 2/3 innings. The 24-year-old has struck out 19, allowed 24 hits, and walked 10 over the four outings.

Those stats do not include the minor league rehab start Matusz made for the Tides on May 26 before he was activated from the 15-day disabled list to make his 2011 debut with the Orioles on June 1.

For anyone pining for a miraculous turnaround for the Orioles’ 2008 first-round pick and a quick return to Baltimore, it’s just the latest disheartening chapter in a disastrous season for the young southpaw — and the Orioles’ future.

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