Following an off day, the Baltimore Orioles sent Dean Kremer to the mound against Minnesota this afternoon in Fort Myers. And Kremer seemed to have ironed out many of his wrinkles that we saw in his last start. Kremer’s line: 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K.
Minnesota hitters squared up a couple of pitches on Kremer, however they either went foul or were caught. But no matter how you spin it, one hit and one walk over three innings of work isn’t bad (and three strikeouts). And the fact that Kremer pitched three innings is also noteworthy. To this point starters have gone a maximum of two innings. Now it appears they’re being stretched out a bit.
Baltimore native Bruce Zimmerman also had an outstanding outing this afternoon. Zimmerman pitched three plus scoreless innings, and has had a good camp thus far. He truly has a good shot at making the team in some capacity. And I’m rooting for him given that he’s a local product. In an industry where guys play all over the country and far away from home, the act of a guy catching on with his hometown team is far too unsung. But time will tell.
This was another one of those shortened games that I don’t like. Beforehand both teams agreed to only play seven innings. And it was very much a pitchers’ duel. The Orioles had a chance to score in the game, putting two runners in scoring position in the top of the sixth. But Minnesota pitched out of it, ending the threat. However Cano’s RBI-double in the seventh gave Minnesota a 1-0 lead, which by default was a 1-0 victory.
But the story was Kremer and Zimmerman, both of whom posted outstanding outings. The bats are going to need to come alive at some point, and they will. But the story today was certainly the pitching.
The O’s return home to Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota tomorrow to take on the Toronto Blue Jays. Keegan Akin gets the start for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Toronto’s Ross Stripling. Game time is set for just after 1 PM.