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A Pitch in the Right Direction

5/29/09
Written by: Anna C.

After a very positive start this season followed by a swift turn in the opposite direction, the Orioles have shown during this past week that there is hope for us fans yet. Though last week’s series against the Yankees in New York left something to be desired in the final scores, there were several notable milestones which bode well for the future: rookie left-fielder Nolan Reimold’s first big league homerun, off the once unhittable Mariano Rivera no less; Ty Wigginton’s first career appearance at shortstop with a solid defensive performance; and a solid display of command for 6 of the 7 innings rookie Brad Bergeson pitched against the formidable Yanks.


Followed by a too-close-for-comfort win of the series against the Washington Nationals, the Birds returned home to sweep the series against the Toronto Blue Jays, and win the first of four games against the Detroit Tigers. And again, the Orioles showcased some young talent. Offensively, Reimold had several more homers, three in a row including his walk-off dinger in the 11th inning on Wednesday off Jays’ reliever Brian Wolfe.

The true story is in the pitching though. David Hernandez demonstrated his skill as he allowed only one run in five hits over five and two-thirds innings on Thursday. This commendable performance against the Tigers was the right-hander’s debut in the majors. Even Jason Berken, the other rookie right-handed pitcher to debut this week, looked like he eventually settled into a groove and managed to get the win after pitching five innings against the Jays on Tuesday.

While none of the rookie pitchers have been extraordinary in their debuts, they have at least demonstrated solid command, presence, and composure. Add those elements to the dependability Reimold has been displaying and the overwhelming excitement over the debut of catcher Matt Wieters tonight, and the Orioles seem to have a recipe for a respectable remainder of this season. But perhaps more important is the promise of only better ones to come.

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