Baltimore Orioles: Chandler Shepherd To Kick Off Spring Against Atlanta Braves
By Nick Stevens
RHP Chandler Shepherd will kick things off for the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday afternoon.
Believe it or not, we are less than two days away from having an actual Baltimore Orioles baseball game to talk about. It may be a spring training game, the first spring training game of the year, but it’s finally baseball after a long, not-so-cold, but long, winter.
As announced by MASN’s Roch Kubatko, we know two of the pitchers who will take the mound on Saturday for the Orioles.
RHP Chandler Shepherd will start the Orioles Grapefruit League opener Saturday vs the Atlanta Braves, followed by RHP Ty Blach. Both righties appeared in the major leagues with Baltimore last season.
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Shepherd is being stretched out this spring in anticipation of working as a starting pitcher in 2020. A waiver claim late last season, Shepherd made 14 appearances in Triple-A with the Norfolk Tides, going 3-5 with a 4.60 ERA (4.04 FIP) and a 1.35 WHIP. He gave up eight home runs in 72 innings (1.00/9 IP) and struck out more than 23% of hitters.
He wasn’t able to quite match those numbers in the big leagues, recording a 6.63 ERA (6.11 FIP), 1.53 WHIP, a 2.37 HR/9 IP rate, and a strikeout rate just tipping 20% in five appearances (three starts).
Shepherd did end the season on a high note, giving up two earned runs on five hits against at Fenway Park against the Boston Red Sox. He struck out a season-high six batters and walked one.
It was also just announced on Thursday afternoon that the Orioles will play their final spring training game at the United States Naval Academy, a contest against the New York Mets. The game will take place at 2 pm on Tuesday, March 24. Jake Russell of The Washington Post reported the story here with ticket details.
The Orioles make their Ed Smith Stadium debut on Sunday, February 23rd at 1 pm. The contest will be aired on MASN.