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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | January 21, 2012
Orioles pitcher Jim Johnson, who shined in his late-season role as the team's closer, said he has a feeling he will open spring training in the bullpen. “I'm pretty sure about that,” Johnson said at Saturday's Orioles FanFest. “We'll figure that out in the team in the spring. The organization has considered the idea of making Johnson a starter, even as recently as this offseason. But with the Orioles' offseason starting pitching additions -- Wei-Yin Chen, Tsuyoshi Wada and Dana Eveland -- the bullpen appears to be his best fit. “I think Dan [Duquette]
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By Alejandro Zuniga and The Baltimore Sun | July 9, 2014
In an emergency, left-hander Wei-Yin Chen could pitch out of the bullpen for the Orioles tonight against the Washington Nationals at Camden Yards, manager Buck Showalter said in his pregame news conference. Right-hander Bud Norris will make his first start for the club tonight since returning from the 15-day disabled list, but if the appearance is cut short, the Orioles could turn to Chen in order to preserve their bullpen. Chen hasn't started since Thursday against the Texas Rangers, when he went six innings and gave up two earned runs.
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Peter Schmuck | April 10, 2012
It was a calculated risk. The Orioles have opened the season with what manager Buck Showalter willingly concedes is an "unconventional" bullpen, which could leave him and baseball operations chief Dan Duquette with some explaining to do if the starting pitchers aren't able to provide enough good innings to keep the relievers fresh. The Orioles do not have a true long reliever to pick up the slack if the starters again make a habit of stalling in the early and middle innings. That might change over the next few weeks - as circumstances dictate - but the team clearly is hoping that the rotation will go deep in enough games to make it a non-issue.
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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | July 3, 2014
With his teammates killing time inside the clubhouse during a 1-hour, 38-minute rain delay Wednesday night, Orioles closer Zach Britton remained in the bullpen, waiting out the weather for his opportunity to close out a 6-4 win over the Texas Rangers at Camden Yards. Britton had just started warming up in the bottom of the eighth when the game was delayed with the Orioles needing just three outs for the victory. Instead of staying dry -- and cool -- inside the Orioles clubhouse, Britton remained in the bullpen beyond the left-center field fence with bullpen coach Dom Chiti and bullpen catcher Jett Ruiz.
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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | May 27, 2013
Some of you are wondering why manager Buck Showalter stuck with closer Jim Johnson in the ninth inning of the Orioles' 6-5 loss to Toronto on Sunday afternoon. The bottom line it that right now this Orioles bullpen is spent. This game was Johnson's to close or lose, and I think 10 times out of 10, Showalter will like his odds with Johnson against Toronto's No. 9 hitter Munenori Kawasaki. I've heard Showalter say it many times: He won't compromise the health of the bullpen. He realizes that this Orioles team will go as far as its bullpen will take it, and there's no way he will put his relievers - as he puts it - “in harm's way.” “Buck doesn't ever put you in a situation where you're overtaxed,” right-hander Tommy Hunter said.
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By Baltimore Sun | March 12, 2010
Seeking seats in the bullpen Barring injuries or trades, most of the Orioles' Opening Day roster is already set with the exception of two or three vacancies in the bullpen. Mike Gonzalez, Jim Johnson, Koji Uehara and Mark Hendrickson are locks, but there are still two or three spots available and a handful of competitors. Pitcher IP ER H BB K's Jeff Zrebiec's skinny Matt Albers, rhp 4 1/3 0 2 0 1 Throwing his sinker for strikes as he did in 2008.
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By Everett Cook and The Baltimore Sun | August 12, 2012
Keeping up with a theme that has been consistent all year for the Orioles, the bullpen had another great game in relief of an unspectacular outing from a starting pitcher. On Sunday, Tommy Hunter pitched a decent game, giving up three runs in five innings, but wasn't great. No matter. Orioles manager Buck Showalter turned the game over to his bullpen in the sixth inning with the score tied at 3, and they didn't allow a hit or a run the rest of the way. “Those guys have been doing it all year,” Hunter said.
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By Dan Connolly, The Baltimore Sun | June 5, 2010
Orioles right-hander Brad Bergesen , who lasted just 2 1/3 innings in his last start against the New York Yankees, has been sent to the bullpen and will have at least one start skipped. Whether the new assignment lasts beyond one turn has not been determined, but Orioles interim manager Juan Samuel said there are no immediate plans to call up another pitcher to take Bergesen's spot in the rotation. "We don't know how long he is going to be down there [in the bullpen]
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By Everett Cook and The Baltimore Sun | July 29, 2012
Orioles starting pitcher Tommy Hunter gave up five runs in 5 1/3 innings Saturday night, marking the third time in the last four games that an Orioles pitcher hasn't recorded a quality start. That quality start was also the only Orioles win in the last six games -- July 26th against Tampa Bay -- when Chris Tillman gave up two earned runs over six innings. In the other three games of that stretch, Orioles starting pitchers have given up a combined 18 runs in 13 2/3 innings, overworking the bullpen and putting a ton of pressure on the offense to make up deficits.
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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | June 11, 2012
The Orioles winning their three-game series against the Phillies this weekend at Camden Yards comes down to one number. One. That's the number of runs the Orioles bullpen allowed in 14 innings of work this series. With two extra-inning games, the teams played 31 innings this series. Their starting pitchers went seven innings just once and the pen had to account for five innings in Friday's series opener, something that usually leads to trouble later on. But not with this bullpen.
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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | June 30, 2014
Starting with today's series opener against the Texas Rangers, the Orioles will play 14 games in as many days until the All-Star break. And their biggest challenge might be how to assemble a roster that keeps them competitive on a nightly basis. The result of third baseman Manny Machado's suspension appeal still looms. He had his appeal hearing at the Warehouse on Wednesday, and the club is waiting to hear whether the five-game suspension will be reduced. An announcement is expected over the next 48 hours.
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By Alejandro Zuniga and The Baltimore Sun | June 29, 2014
If Brian Matusz had won the matchup with the Tampa Bay Rays' James Loney in the sixth inning, the rest of the Orioles' game Sunday afternoon could have looked a lot different. But Loney hit a double, and Orioles manager Buck Showalter decided to stay with the left-hander instead of inserting right-hander Ryan Webb and further depleting a bullpen worn thin by Friday's doubleheader and a short outing Sunday by starter Miguel Gonzalez. Matusz, who was brought in to face the left-handed Loney with two outs in the sixth, went on to give up another double and a two-run home run as part of a decisive seven-run inning, and the Orioles set a new season-high in runs allowed in a 12-7 loss to the Rays in front of an announced 32,665 in the series finale at Camden Yards.
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The Baltimore Sun | June 21, 2014
Seeking relief for their overworked bullpen, the Orioles have optioned Kevin Gausman to Triple-A Norfolk, a move that is not expected to keep the right-hander out of the club's rotation for long. Because the Orioles can add a "26th man" to their roster for day-night doubleheaders, they are likely to recall Gausman for Friday's games against the Tampa Bay Rays. Gausman is likely to then be sent down again after Friday. Normally, a player must stay in the minor leagues 10 days before returning.
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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | June 20, 2014
The Orioles open their three-game series against the New York Yankees tonight in the Bronx. They're 4-2 this season in games following days off, winning their past four after losing the first two. After taking two of three at Yankee Stadium in April, the Orioles have won five of their last seven series against the Yankees in New York. The Orioles are also 19-12 against the AL East. Seven of those wins come against last-place Tampa Bay, so they're 12-11 against the rest of the division.
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By Alejandro Zuniga and The Baltimore Sun | June 15, 2014
Whether or not the Orioles use two long relievers today will determine when right-hander Miguel Gonzalez is activated from the 15-day disabled list -- and on what day he'll make his first major league start since straining his groin. If right-hander Chris Tillman has a long outing this afternoon against the Toronto Blue Jays, Gonzalez will be activated to start Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Rays, Orioles manager Buck Showalter said during his pregame news conference today. Otherwise, Gonzalez could be reinstated sooner to be available out of the bullpen.
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By Dan Connolly, The Baltimore Sun | June 15, 2014
Orioles right-handed relievers Darren O'Day and Tommy Hunter have been good friends for years. They even have vacationed together in the offseason. But there is a friendly rivalry brewing between the two, caused by bullpen-homer-gate. In the fifth inning Saturday against the Toronto Blue Jays, first baseman Chris Davis launched a home run to left-center field. The ball was headed toward the visiting team's bullpen at Camden Yards when Hunter jumped up and caught it for a highlight that was listed among ESPN's top 10 plays of the day. "I didn't want the other team to get the ball," Hunter said.
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By Matt Vensel | February 26, 2013
In their unexpected run to the playoffs last season, the Orioles were historically good in one-run games, winning more than 76 percent of them. Their bullpen was among the best in the majors -- and among the best in franchise history -- as relievers went 32-11 with 55 saves and a 3.00 ERA as the Orioles won 93 games. The Orioles ranked fifth in ERA and also finished fifth in WHIP with 1.21 walks and hits per inning. They somehow did it without striking out a lot of batters, as they ranked 28th with 7.49 strikeouts per nine innings.
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By Eduardo A. Encina and The Baltimore Sun | January 3, 2013
Last season, the bullpen was one of the Orioles' season-long strengths, and while the club's corps of relievers returns intact in 2013, executive vice president Dan Duquette said he's open to adding another bullpen arm this offseason. The Orioles' bullpen compiled a 3.00 ERA last season, the fifth-best mark in baseball and the third best in the American League. The bullpen returns five locks: closer Jim Johnson, Pedro Strop, Darren O'Day, Luis Ayala and Troy Patton. Right-hander Tommy Hunter blossomed when he moved to the bullpen, so he's a likely candidate to return.
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By Eduardo A. Encina, The Baltimore Sun | May 31, 2014
HOUSTON -- Right-hander Tommy Hunter , on the disabled list with a left groin strain, will throw a bullpen session on Sunday, likely at Double-A Bowie, Showalter said. Showalter said he believed Hunter would need two bullpen sessions before going on a brief minor league rehab assignment. He would then likely only need one or two rehab games at a minor league affiliate before being able to return to the Orioles, which puts him in play to be activated when he's eligible to come off the DL on June 5. "He's got a shot of making it," Showalter said.
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By Dan Connolly and The Baltimore Sun | May 22, 2014
The Orioles return to Camden Yards today to begin a four-game series against the Cleveland Indians, who are coming off a three-game sweep of the American League Central-leading Detroit Tigers. It's hard to say which Orioles team is going to show up tonight, but the Indians struggle against left-handers, so the club hopes it can get another good outing from Wei-Yin Chen. It's expected that there will be another fresh pitcher in the bullpen tonight after Chris Tillman could only go one-plus inning Wednesday.
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