O’s defeat Sox on backs of Rodriguez & Rutschman

The one thing, as Orioles fans, that we can get caught up on is the over-expected success for Grayson Rodriguez. Now, that is not to say he won’t be successful, but there is a big jump from Triple-A to the majors.

Rodriguez dominated the minor league circuit with ease, leaving many to expect the same success in the majors. This spring, Rodriguez has been steady and effective as he prepares for his first big league season.

Rodriguez was on the mound today, as the Birds welcomed the Red Sox to Ed Smith Stadium. Though he retired nine of the first 10 batters he faced, Rodriguez would have an outing of two different tales.

The good news is Rodriguez finished three innings of work, throwing 61 pitches with 35 of them being strikes. He also struck out six, surrendered no home runs and only gave up one hit through the first three innings of work.

On the other hand of the outing was that he gave up four hits, two walks and four earned runs. Three hits and two walks in the fourth ended Rodriguez’s day, as he failed to record an out in the inning. Some adversity that Rodriguez will have to work through this season.

“Good learning experience,” Hyde said of the inning. “I think it’s OK, honestly, to have those types of innings and see how he bounces back.”

Rodriguez doesn’t seem to be fazed by the outing, as he continues his preparation for the season ahead.

“I don’t think we’re necessarily worried about results in spring training,” Rodriguez explained. “That’s something that’s kind of been our motto coming up through the minor leagues. It only matters what you do in the big leagues.”

The Orioles bullpen went into lockdown mode going forward, as Morgan McSweeney, Keegan Akin, Joey Krehbiel, Yennier Cano and Nolan Hoffman combined for six innings of two-hit ball.

Akin pitched another two innings, allowing just one hit and striking out three. He currently has five innings of work over three appearances and has five strikeouts with a 0.00 ERA and a WHIP of 0.80.

Krehbiel had another bounce-back outing as he tries to erase his early spring troubles. Though he walked a batter, he induced two grounders and picked up a strikeout.

Nolan Hoffman continues his strong spring as he pitched another scoreless inning of work, striking out two batters.

Hoffman now has appeared in five games, allowing no runs across 3.2 innings. He has six strikeouts and four saves while producing a WHIP of 0.55. Health will be the biggest thing to monitor with Hoffman, as he has yet to put a full season together in the minors.

On offense, it was two regulars who carried the Orioles today. Adley Rutschman and Jorge Mateo made the difference in the game.

Rutschman was 1-for-3, but the one was a big one. Rutschman would pick up four RBIs with an opposite field grand slam, his second homer this spring.

Mateo collected two hits, including a double, two RBIs and a run scored. His hit total today doubled his total hits for the spring across 20 at-bats.

The rest of the offense accounted for three hits, coming from Ryan Mountcastle, Austin Hays and Nomar Mazara. The O’s finished the game with six total hits, six runs, with seven strikeouts and were 3-for-6 with runners in scoring position in the 6-4 victory.

Side Notes:

Orioles manager Brandon Hyde announced before the game that Orioles minor league pitcher Luis Andrés Ortiz Soriano had passed away after his fight with cancer. Soriano was just 20 years old.

“Sad news last night,” Hyde said. “From all of us here on our major league staff and the players, we just want to give our condolences to the Ortiz family.”

Soriano signed with the Orioles in July 2019. He played with the Florida Complex team in 2021 but did not play during the 2022 season.

Dean Kremer started for Team Israel today and went four innings. He threw 49 pitches, 32 for strikes, giving up three hits, one walk and striking out four in Israel’s 3-1 victory against Nicaragua.

Anthony Santander led Team Venezuela to a victory over the Manny Machado-led Team Dominican Republic. Santander launched a huge second deck home run and later tripled before finishing his day 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI while also making a nice diving catch in right field.

D.L. Hall will pitch another live batting practice on Tuesday. This after his live BP yesterday went well according to Hyde.

Nick Vespi will pitch in a game tomorrow, as his progress continues after hernia surgery.

Ryan O’Hearn tweaked his ankle and is considered day-to-day. O’Hearn is fighting for the backup first base role with those such as Franchy Cordero and Lewin Díaz.

The O’s are back tomorrow for their first taste of split squad action against both the Tigers and Braves. Kyle Gibson and Spenser Watkins will take their respective mounds, with both games set for 1:05 p.m. EST.

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Who stood out to you in today’s O’s win? Let us know in the comments below! And make sure to follow The Baltimore Battery on Facebook and Twitter, and use the hashtag #baltimorebattery when sharing our content!

Like Stephen’s content? Follow him on Twitter – @SRJHeckman

One thought on “O’s defeat Sox on backs of Rodriguez & Rutschman

  1. Maybe another month or three in Norfolk wouldn’t be such a bad idea for Rodriquez? It’s not like the O’s don’t have enough other viable starting options.

    Liked by 1 person

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