If you’re looking for a sleeper for your fantasy league team, you might want to consider Andrew Triggs.
Who’s Andrew Triggs? He’s a right-handed pitcher, who’ll be 27 in March and has faced just one hitter in Triple-A.
Yet, the Orioles thought so highly of him that they added him to their 40-man roster and brought him to Sarasota earlier this month for their three-day minicamp.
Triggs was quietly acquired last April from the Kansas City organization, sent to Bowie, where he was a key reliever on the Eastern League championship team.
In 43 games, Triggs had an ERA of 1.03, a WHIP of 0.869 and more than six times as many strikeouts as walks. And, he didn’t allow a home run in 61 innings.
Triggs has given up just seven home runs in four minor league seasons.
Buck Showalter has noticed.
“He bounced around a little bit, came over here and took off and did well. In his mind, he's sitting there thinking this might be my one chance. But it won't be, because he's coming to big league camp and he's on the roster. He knows that. He's a sharp kid,” Showalter said. “
“Triggs is interesting. He can throw it over the plate, which is always good. You see where he is on the rubber, he'll be a challenge for right-handed hitters. I like the fact that he throws it over."
Showalter likes Triggs’ maturity and thinks that Darren O’Day will take a liking to him, too.
Triggs didn’t start playing pro ball until 2012, but this looks like his first real opportunity. He’s aware of Showalter’s feelings about him.
“It’s obviously nice to hear, and I think every guy in this room, every pitcher out there has to believe he can contribute at the major league level. It’s nice to hear that as some confirmation, but I don’t get wrapped in anything along those lines. I know I still have things I need to improve on and go out there and work on, today, tomorrow, next week, then all through the spring and carry that into the season,” Triggs said.
Triggs, Parker Bridwell and Christopher Lee, teammates on the Baysox, were all added to the 40-man.
“I try not to get too wrapped up in playing GM and looking at roster moves and things like that, but I know I had a good year. I knew this was my protection year where they were going to have to make a decision one way or another, so I was hopeful. I wouldn’t say surprised, but I was really pleased when they made the decision to add me,” Triggs said.
Triggs, Lee and Mychal Givens had something in common in Bowie. In a combined 156 1/3 innings, the three combined to allow just one home run.
“I think there is, in most clubhouses around baseball, everyone wants to keep the ball in the ballpark more than they want to keep it out of the ballpark. I think working two-seamers in there is part of my game. I want to get as many groundballs as possible, and there are a lot of really good arms in there and guys who have similar if not identical pitching styles. I think there is some overlap in the way that different guys in this room pitch. For any team, obviously it’s better to keep the ball in the ballpark, on the ground,” Triggs said.
It’s logical to think that Triggs will start the season at Norfolk to give him some exposure to Triple-A.
“I’ll let them make all those decisions. I’m trying to go out here and work on a few things, here and there throughout the spring. I think that’s the logical next step, but I think that no one in here is trying to do anything less than break with the major league club. I’ll let them make those decisions down the line,” Triggs said.
Showalter thinks that Triggs can pitch in the majors this year.
“It probably sounds silly, but I’ve tasted it since I was 12 years old. I mean, it’s nice to be this close. If you look at it objectively, as an outside observer, you are a little bit closer. For me, this has been in my head longer than I can remember. I’m just going to continue to do what I’ve been doing for the last 10-plus years and keep picking out one or two things every single day to work on and keep working toward that goal. I honestly don’t look at it much different from any time in years past, but I’m not silly enough to think that things aren’t different than they were at this time last year or the year before,” Triggs said.