Hernandez on his first start

David Hernandez made his first start this spring against the Minnesota Twins this afternoon — his fourth
appearance total — and told reporters afterwards “it felt really good to start.”

It looked pretty good in Fort Myers too, from what I was
told.*

Hernandez went 3 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing five hits and a walk
and picking up a pair of strikeouts.

 

 “Anytime
you put up zeros on the board, you’re doing something right,” Hernandez said.
“I had pretty good fastball command today. I was able to throw it on both sides
of the plate. My slider was good. I threw about 10 changeups. I don’t think I
threw one for strikes, but going out there for my first three appearances, I
didn’t throw any changeups. So, today I felt like I wanted to go out there and
throw some in the game.”

Hernandez tossed 39 of his 58 pitches
for strikes and was pleased with where his stamina was, considering he’s been
pitching out of the bullpen. He said he wanted to finish the fourth inning, but
was on a 60-pitch limit.

With the Orioles rotation projected to
be Millwood, Jeremy Guthrie, Brad Bergesen, Brian Matusz and Chris Tillman,
Hernandez -who made 19 starts for Baltimore last year – has been a little lost
in the shuffle. The organization could either elect to keep him as a starter
and send him to Triple-A or pitch Hernandez out of the bullpen.

 “I’m just going to go out there and try to put up zeros, and it
doesn’t matter if I’m starting or reliever,” Hernandez said. “I’d definitely
like to be a starter, but if they need me in the bullpen, then so be it. I’ll
be more than happy and I’ll be ready.”

*No, I was not slacking off. I was on Kevin Millwood duty. Check out his start here.

******

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