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Friday night Orioles game thread: vs Red Sox, 7:05

In which old meets new as O’s No. 8 prospect Kyle Bradish makes his MLB debut against the 42-year-old junkballer Rich Hill.

MLB: Spring Training-Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees
Get used to seeing this guy on the mound.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

It’s good to be home. What started as kind of a fun road trip in Oakland and Anaheim took a left turn as the pitching and defense hit the skids. Now, the Orioles are back in Camden Yards for a three-game series against an 8-12 Boston Red Sox.

And, after months of playing it coy about prospect promotions, the Orioles are finally calling up the first of their Elias-era pitching prospects, Kyle Bradish, acquired as part of the trade that sent Dylan Bundy to the Angels, to stabilize this injury-decimated rotation. For a while now, Mike Elias had made it sound like Orioles fans wouldn’t see any pitching prospects promoted until mid-summer but, as they say, fate—and three injured starters—have a way of making a mockery out of your plans. Welcome, Kyle Bradish!

Since the spring, the Orioles’ No. 10 prospect has been smoking Triple-A hitters, with a 1.20 ERA in three starts for the Norfolk Tides, not to mention 17 K’s to just three walks in 15 innings. Bradish specializes in the high fastball and the curve and slider. I hope, against a stacked Boston lineup, that he brings his A-game. Good luck, Kyle!

It’s a funny pairing of starters: Bradish, with exactly zero MLB starts to his name, against the 42-year-old lefty Rich Hill, who has thrown eleven thousand innings and is now pitching for his 11th team, including a season with the Orioles in 2009. Hill has a career 3.81 ERA (which is honestly better than I’d imagined). At this point, his fastball averages 88 mph, and he’s dealing entirely in tricky-old-man stuff. So far in 2022, he’s been a little bit hit- and walk-prone but he’s had good results against the Orioles in the past. Trey Mancini is 1-for-3 versus Hill, Cedric Mullins is a career 2-for-5, and Austin Hays is 0-for-5. (Maybe last night’s four-hit man is ready to bury his futility streak against Hill.)

The O’s also recalled Tyler Nevin, who’d been OPS’ing .979 in Triple-A, and in corresponding moves put Alex Wells on the IL with a sore elbow and optioned Mike Baumann, who seemed in a bad headspace. Tonight Brandon Hyde is doing some weird things to get bats in the lineup: the hot Austin Hays is DH’ing, Nevin starts at third, and The Great Trey Mancini Outfield experiment continues in right. Anthony Santander is out of the lineup for reasons that haven’t been announced as of this writing. Let’s pray for better pitching and defense tonight than we saw this week!

Let’s go O’s!

Orioles lineup

1. Cedric Mullins CF
2. Trey Mancini RF
3. Ryan Mountcastle 1B
4. Austin Hays DH
5. Ramón Urías 2B
6. Tyler Nevin 3B
7. Robinson Chirinos C
8. Jorge Mateo SS
9. Ryan McKenna LF

Red Sox lineup

1. Trevor Story 2B
2. Alex Verdugo LF
3. Xander Boegaerts SS
4. Rafael Devers 3B
5. Enrique Hernandez CF
6. Frenchy Cordero 1B
7. Christian Arroyo DH
8. Jackie Bradley Jr. RF
9. Christian Vazquez C