Hernandez update and the plan for more arms
Reliever David Hernandez(left ankle sprain) is expected to throw an inning for Double-A Bowie on Saturday and assuming everything goes well, he will pitch again for the Baysox Monday.
Hernandez will be evaluated following the pair of outings in Richmond, Va. and could be activated for the second part of next week’s road trip. Orioles manager Buck Showalter acknowledged Friday that Hernandez’s return could determine what the organization does with long reliever Rick VandenHurk.
VandenHurk is out of options next spring and the Orioles want to see what they have in him, and will try to get the big righty a few starts, although it remains to be seen whether they will be spot starts or if he will be moved into the rotation.
Hernandez’s pending arrival, coupled with the recent surge in the starting rotation, has also given the Orioles little reason to add arms with roster expansion. While Chris Tillman will be inserted into the rotation -now to be six men - it’s unclear when, or if, the O’s will add extra relievers.
“We have had a couple [games] where we used a lot of guys. I don’t see [adding a reliever] immediately,” Showalter said. “But it could change.”
Triple-A Norfolk’s Troy Patton, Dennis Sarfate and Alberto Castillo could be potential candidate for a callup, although Patton is the only one on the team’s 40-man roster. The O’s are also believed to be looking at players in Bowie.