It’s finally time to join team Bundy. After spending the first half of the season in relief, the Baltimore Orioles have decided to add to their troubled starting rotation by promoting from within. The 23 year old right-handed pitcher will make his first career start in Tampa Bay. Bundy has gotten steadily better as the season has progressed, including one incredibly impressive in Los Angeles (where he recorded all 7 outs by strikeout.) before the break and has slowly been stretched out. Bundy has gone from pitching one inning every day to 3 innings every 3-4 days. He is currently 2-1 with a 3.08 ERA in 38 relief innings and has not given up a run over his past 6 appearances spanning 14 1/3 innings.
Bundy has worked exceptionally well in relief this season after various injuries – none more serious than the Tommy John surgery he had three years ago — limited him to just 17 minor league games since the beginning of the 2013 season.
However, the Orioles are unlikely to allow Bundy to go very long in the game as they have been incredibly careful with him all season. Bundy’s pitch count has been closely monitored and his best pitch, the cutter has been completely eliminated from his pitch selection. (The Orioles have said Bundy would be allowed to throw the cutter again next season.) The elimination of Bundy’s best pitch, has also given him the opportunity to vastly improve his other pitches, a move that promises to make Bundy a potentially dangerous weapon next season. It has been quite the turn around season for the pitcher who’s arm troubles raised a lot of questions over if this once best prospect in baseball would ever come close to reaching his potential. And now the sky is once again the limit.
This move likely spells the end for Ubaldo Jimenez, who as pitched an ungodly 7.38 era and 1.971 WHIP and has had trouble escaping the first inning SEVERAL times this season and has already been kicked out of the rotation once previously.