It’s become common knowledge for Baltimore Orioles’ fans, the O’s will not need a fifth starter until April 15, but the minor league auditions have not gone so well.

To date (excluding Alec Asher start last night), the AAA Norfolk Tides, which most feel is where the fifth starter is likely to come from, have not exhibited a single good audition by a starter.

Mike Wright got the nod on Thursday and proceeded to allow five runs (two earned) on six hits, two walks and struck out four over just three innings (pitched to one batter in the fourth). He needed 70 pitches to get through that outing.

Gabriel Ynoa took the mound Friday and performed even worse than Wright. Ynoa allowed seven runs (five earned) on 10 hits, one walk and struck out two over just 2.2 innings pitched. Ynoa threw 66 pitches.

Perhaps Chris Lee, who looked pretty good in spring training, would right the ship on Saturday…not so much. Lee allowed eight runs (all earned) on nine hits, two walks and struck out one over 3.1 innings. Lee threw 66 pitches.

Surely spring training standout, Jayson Aquino, would stop the poor starting pitching train right? Unfortunately no. Aquino started on Sunday and allowed four runs (all earned) on six hits, two walks and struck out three, and needed 73 pitches to do so.

There are of course a couple of candidates in Baltimore to get the start in Tyler Wilson and Vidal Nuno. Wilson has thrown 2.1 innings of relief and has allowed two earned runs on four hits over his two outings. Nuno has just 1/3 inning to his record thus far in the O’s bullpen.

Wright is scheduled to start tonight for the Tides, so if he makes the start, he is no longer a candidate one would think since he would then be pitching on short rest come the 15th. I will say though, if we see him throw just 45-60 pitches, perhaps he could still be a candidate.

Regardless of who gets the start on the 15th, odds are it’s not going to be someone who has instilled confidence in us to this point.


By: Josh Michael

Founder/Editor BabyBirdland