The Orioles recalled left-handed pitcher Zach Britton from Norfolk to join the team in Oakland for tonight’s game. It may well have been a surprise to some people that Britton is back with the Orioles so soon. Britton had a rocky final outing in spring training and lost out to Jake Arrieta for the last spot in the rotation.
With the Orioles needing pitching for the weekend, it seems that Britton is back—at least for now. The Orioles don’t need a starter until Monday, and that will probably be Freddy Garcia, who will soon be able to opt-out of his minor league contract.
Britton has little experience in the bullpen, one appearance in Frederick in 2009, and one in the last regular season game of 2012.
He was pitching well at Norfolk, but manager Buck Showalter said that Josh Stinson, who was bombed for four home runs on Wednesday, was pitching “a tick” better, according to Norfolk manager Ron Johnson and pitching coach Rick Griffin.
Britton temporarily gives the Orioles four left-handers in the bullpen, and he also gives them another arm who can go multiple innings. He’s 1-0 with a 1.98 ERA in three starts for Norfolk though he’s walked seven batters in 13 2/3 innings.
In 2011, Britton was 11-11 with a 4.81 ERA, and last year was 5-3 with a 5.07 ERA after suffering a left shoulder injury in spring training.