Os sign De La Cruz, and five others
Adding to their bullpen depth, the Orioles signed left-hander Kelvin De La Cruz to a one-year contract, their sixth announced signing on Monday.
“We like his size and he’s got a couple of good pitches, he has a couple good weapons to strike the hitters out,” executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said of De La Cruz. “He had a good year last year in the Dodgers Triple-A. We think theres a couple things we can help him out with [adjustments-wise], and that he can compete.”
The 25-year-old southpaw had a 2.67 ERA in 50 appearances between Double-A and Triple-A last season and was particularly effective against left-handers, holding them to a .217/.298/.261 line, while recording 37 strikeouts in 106 plate appearances.
De La Cruz has struggled with his command, averaging 4.7 walks per nine innings throughout his eight Minor League seasons, including 35 walks in 67 1/3 innings last year. He did, however, finish third in the Pacific Coast League with a career-high 11.3 strikeouts over nine innings last year.
De La Cruz was in the Tigers Minors in 2012 and spent 2006-’11 with Cleveland. His signing brings the Orioles’ current 40-man roster total to 32 total players.<p>
“We are still looking for some depth for our Major League pitching staff, but De La Cruz has some good pitches and gives us another option from the left side,” Duquette said.
The Orioles also signed right-handed pitchers Tim Alderson and Brock Huntzinger, left-hander Nick Additon and outfielders Chih-Hsien Chiang and Kyeong Kang to Minor League deals earlier in the day. All three pitchers will get an invite to Major League Spring Training.