Talk about kicking you while you’re down. The Baltimore Orioles invested 12 million dollars in Mike Gonzalez to be their closer for the next two years only to have the guy go down on April 14th with a shoulder injury.
Then, after rallying back from Tommy John, Alfredo Simon solidified his role as the O’s closer while Gonzo recovered and recorded six saves, now he too is down with a hamstring strain. He joins Koji Uehara, who will likely be DL’ed just six appearances after being activated from his third trip to the disabled list since joining Baltimore in 2009.
Nothing seems to be going right for this team on the field, but their injuries are making the play even worse. If Koji and Simon make trips to the disabled list the team will be forced to call up a pitcher from AAA Norfolk, but they are limited there too. Unless they would like to bring up Alberto Castillo, with his 12.79 ERA in nine games, or Kam Mickolio, 1-0 7.71 ERA, the Orioles may be forced to think outside the box.
I am of the mind that I would much rather see Chris Tillman or Jake Arrieta, guys that are supposed to have a future with this club, than 35 year old Castillo. Bringing up either Tillman or Arrieta, who are both have stellar years at Norfolk, would cause a shake up on the Orioles roster. The birds would likely have to move David Hernandez to a long inning relief role, a move that I recommended in Spring Training.
No one saw the roster being this shaken up on May 24th, but this is probably the Orioles best bet with Simon and Koji being the latest to go down.