Orioles Present Meets Orioles Future
Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
Ubaldo Jimenez had his first rehab start in Aberdeen on Tuesday night. Jimenez is currently recovering from a sprained ankle after stepping in a parking lot pothole outside of Camden Yards.
On Tuesday, Jimenez went 4 2/3 innings giving up five hits and only allowing one earned run. After the game, he said he did not think once about his ankle while he was on the mound which is a good sign. What is not a good sign is his walk:strikeout ratio. He walked three batters last night as well as struck out three batters in his start.
Jimenez did not seem like he had much control of his pitches, which explains why he threw a wild pitch in the fourth inning for Tri-City to take the 1-0 lead.
After Jimenez was taken out of the game in the fifth inning for Nigel Nootbaar who recorded the final out of the inning, Pat Connaughton came in the sixth inning and pitched well.
Like Jimenez, the No. 20 Orioles prospect went 4 2/3 innings. Unlike Jimenez, Connaughton allowed only four base runners (two base hits; two walks) in a scoreless showing. In 14 2/3 innings pitched on the season, Connaughton now has a 2.45 ERA with ten strikeouts.
It was cool to see a current Orioles starter being backed up by a future Orioles starter. What was even cooler for Connaughton and the rest of the Aberdeen Ironbirds was what happened after the game. Once the Ironbirds won on a walk-off single in the tenth inning, Jimenez bought the entire team a post game meal that included steak and lobster.