Orioles call up reliever Ramon Ramirez, option Evan Meek

Jeff Curry

The Orioles called up righty reliever Ramon Ramirez from Norfolk before Monday's game. If you didn't know there was a Ramon Ramirez on Norfolk, you're not the only one. To make room on the roster, they optioned Evan Meek as well.

Before Monday's game, the Orioles added a reliever from Norfolk's roster who you might not have even known was on Norfolk's roster. Ramon Ramirez, who has appeared in five games for the Tides, had his contract purchased by the Orioles, because they need more relievers who aren't named Evan Meek. Coincidentally, Meek was optioned to make room on the 25-man roster for Ramirez.

The Orioles will sign anyone they can get their hands on to stash in Norfolk. It doesn't matter how long since they were good, Dan Duquette will give them a shot in Triple-A to see what's left in the tank. Most of these minor league signings amount to nothing. Sometimes they turn into something, for a couple of days at least.

Ramirez is a 5'11" righty who is 32 years old. He last pitched in the big leagues in 2013, when he was a disaster in six games for San Francisco, posting an 11.12 ERA. During a big league career that spanned 2006-2013, he appeared for the Rockies, Royals, Red Sox, Mets, and Giants, appearing in 423 games, all in relief, and posting a 3.42 ERA.

From 2008-2011, Ramirez spent the full season on a big league roster every year and posted a sub-3.00 ERA while appearing in 65+ games a year. He struggled for the last couple of years as he seemed to stop being able to throw strikes.

Earlier this year, Ramirez was on Seattle's Triple-A team but he was released at the end of April. Ramirez first pitched for the Tides on June 16. He has not walked anyone in eight innings, a small sample size, but it's something. He's also struck out 14 batters in those eight innings for the Tides.

Now that he's on the Orioles' big league roster, if he's good, maybe he'll stay around for a while. If he's not good, well, no one has much invested in Ramon Ramirez. They also might not keep him around even if he is good, because baseball, as life, can be cruel.

In Ramirez's journey through the big leagues, he has been traded five times. At different times, he was traded for Jorge de la Rosa, Coco Crisp, and Angel Pagan.

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