Orioles Preview - Page 18 - A look back at the 2014 AL East champion Orioles (6)

Orioles Preview
- Page 18
A look back at the 2014 AL East champion Orioles (6)

RHP BUD NORRIS

 

2014 contribution: Like many in the Orioles rotation with him, Norris was at his best in 2014, his first and only full season in Baltimore. He made 28 starts with a 3.65 ERA and a career-best 1.216 WHIP for Showalter. He was much better in the ALDS (61⁄3 scoreless innings in Game 3) than he was in the ALCS, when he allowed four runs on nine hits in 41⁄3 innings of a Game 2 loss.

 

Why he’s gone: Norris succumbed to the pressure of his free-agent walk year in 2015 and had a 7.06 ERA when he was designated for assignment that July 31and then released.

 

Where he is now: After bouncing around for a couple of years, Norris has found success as a reliever, saving 47 games over the past two seasons. He signed a minor league deal with the Blue Jays this past offseason.

 

RHP MIGUEL GONZÁLEZ

 

2014 contribution: There aren’t many better finds from the Duquette era than González, who was signed out of the Mexican League and enjoyed the third of his three straight seasons with a sub-4.00 ERA during the playoff season in 2014. He was a hard-luck loser in Game 4 of the ALCS, allowing two runs (one earned) and pitching into the sixth inning as the Orioles’ bats went quiet.

 

Why he’s gone: González was beginning to show signs of wear and tear down the stretch in 2015. After signing Yovani Gallardo with Mike Wright and Tyler Wilson ready for rotation jobs at the time, the Orioles surprisingly released González during spring training in 2016.

 

Where he is now: The Orioles ended up ruing his release some as González was strong in 2016 with the Chicago White Sox, but struggled in three starts in 2018 and didn’t latch on anywhere for 2019.

 

RHP UBALDO JIMÉNEZ

 

2014 contribution: There was a certain failure to launch in the first year of Jiménez’s four-year, $50 million contract, with neither side taking to the other. Jiménez went on the injured list with a parking lot ankle injury and lost his rotation spot to Kevin Gausman down the stretch. That coincided with the rotation taking off, and meant Jiménez was a very expensive player who was left off the postseason roster.

 

Why he’s gone: Once Jiménez’s four-year deal with the Orioles was up after the 2017 season, their parting was much-anticipated and a general relief on both sides.

 

Where he is now: Jiménez popped up as a spectator at an Orioles game in New York in 2018, but that’s as close as he’s been to the majors since. He hasn’t pitched since leaving the Orioles.

 

RHP KEVIN GAUSMAN

 

2014 contribution: After being yo-yoed between Baltimore and Triple-A Norfolk and in and out of the rotation in 2013, Gausman was a starter all the way in 2014 and gave the Orioles 20 games with a 3.57 ERA. His addition to the rotation in Jiménez’s place and the fact that he was a homegrown pitcher doing well in the majors were boons for the team.

 

Why he’s gone: The Orioles ramped up their rebuild from first gear to fourth at the trade deadline last year by dealing Gausman along with Darren O’Day to the Braves for a four-player package, international signing bonus money and important salary relief.

 

Where he is now: Gausman finished 2018 strongly with the Braves, and provided the shoulder soreness he’s dealing with in the spring subsides, he could be the next pitcher the Orioles badly regret trading.

 

LHP ZACK BRITTON

 

2014 contribution: It was either bullpen or bust for Britton in 2014, as the left-hander was out of minor league options and hadn’t panned out as a starter to that point. By mid-May, he was the team’s closer, and he saved 37 games with a 1.65 ERA in the regular season. Britton pitched six times in the 2014 playoffs, accounting for all six of his Orioles playoff appearances.

 

Why he’s gone: Britton was one of the main pieces the Orioles could deal at the 2018 deadline, and he went to the Yankees for a three-player package of pitchers Dillon Tate, Josh Rogers and Cody Carroll.

 

Where he is now: The Yankees liked what they saw from Britton last year enough to sign him to a three-year, $39 million free-agent contract this offseason, making him part of the most daunting bullpen in the game.

 

RHP DARREN O’DAY

 

2014 contribution: The Orioles had already gotten two years of reliable relief from O’Day entering 2014, but his 1.70 ERA in 682⁄3 innings that season put him on a new level. After allowing 13 earned runs all season, he allowed four earned runs and took two losses in four playoff appearances.

 

Why he’s gone: O’Day dealt with a significant injury every year after he signed a four-year contract following the 2015 season, and was recovering from hamstring surgery when he was dealt with Gausman to Atlanta last July.

 

Where he is now: The Braves are hoping O’Day can be a healthy and contributing part of their bullpen in 2019.