BALTIMORE—After his rocky start on Wednesday night, the Orioles optioned Mike Wright to Triple-A Norfolk. Left-hander Brian Duensing’s contract was purchased from the Tides.
Wright, who was knocked out in the third inning of the Orioles’ 13-9 win, is 2-3 with a 5.88 ERA in 10 games.
Manager Buck Showalter said that Wright, who beat out Miguel Gonzalez for a spot in the starting rotation this spring, will go down to Norfolk to start. He’ll start on Monday for the Tides.
“He’s in the process of becoming a good pitcher for us up here,” Showalter said.
Showalter emphasized that Wright won’t be converted into a reliever.
“Mike’s going to be a good starter for the Baltimore Orioles, and that’s what I feel. Today is part of the process,” Showalter said. “Some guys come up and they get a little better each time. I’m hoping the next time Mike comes up, he won’t need this move to be made. He’ll contribute to our club as a starter, I really believe that.”
With Wright out of the rotation, the Orioles will need a starter for Monday. T.J. McFarland and Vance Worley are possibilities.
Yovani Gallardo, who is making his first rehab start at Frederick is, for the moment, not a candidate although that could change.
Showalter feels Gallardo needs two rehab starts, but the vacancy in the rotation won’t force the Orioles hand.
“It’s not going to be done because of the need,” Showalter said.
The Orioles feel strongly about Wright’s potential.
“Mike knows how we think about him. When he says he’s close, he’s right. That’s how close he is,” Showalter said.
“He’d like to work it out here, [but] he knows when it’s good enough, and when it’s not.”
The 33-year-old Duensing was 41-37 with a 4.13 ERA in seven seasons with Minnesota. He signed a minor league contract with the Orioles on May 25 after he opted out of a minor league deal with Kansas City.
Duensing pitched three scoreless innings for the Tides.