WASHINGTON—Ubaldo Jimenez is Buck Showalter’s choice to start Thursday, and he’s not backing down from it.
“He’s actually probably the most equipped. He’s pitched well here and against these guys, and two-fold, we’ve looked at our options and [he’s] the one most worthy of getting the opportunity,” Showalter said.
“Actually, [it] makes our bullpen work a little bit better too the other four days. He’s a guy who is physically better suited to pitch, to start.”
Vance Worley threw three innings on Tuesday night, and that eliminated him.
“Here’s the part of that. If he doesn’t pitch that game last night, probably Zach [Britton] or [Brad] Brach or [Mychal] Givens or all three of them would have been in that ballgame. In order for us to be good tonight and the next night, we need somebody to do that job,” Showalter said, adding: “It’s not a given that Vance would do well as a starter.”
Jimenez has pitched well, and in 2010 had even a better year than Chris Tillman is having now.
“Ubaldo’s got that type of pedigree. He’s pitched well in this situation before. He pitched well in Minnesota that day, all things considered. It’s going to be tough on him because he hasn’t started in a while, but he’s built up and he’s the most experienced option we have. I’m not going to get into critiquing what our other options are. I do know one thing. Everybody’s getting blocked and claimed this time of year. We think Ubaldo is our best option right now,” Showalter said.
Showalter thinks that Wright will do better in this stint with the Orioles because he won’t be starting—for now.
“It’s a different role than he had before because he provided length and could fit the role that we needed because Parker [Bridwell] hadn’t pitched back-to-back much, so we have to be careful there. Parker comes in and pitches, two, three innings tonight we’d probably get somebody to replace him because we’re not going to go without arms to protect everybody. We’ll see when the smoke clears today what we’re going to do tomorrow,” Showalter said.
Showalter said that T.J. McFarland, who’s currently rehabbing with Bowie was discussed as an option for the role Wright is going to fill, and could be added if Bridwell is swapped out. He did say that ideally, he’d prefer McFarland get one or two more outings before he’s brought back.
NOTES: Joey Rickard, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a thumb injury, will be reexamined on Sept. 2. … Brian Duensing (elbow) threw seven pitches in the Gulf Coast League in his first rehab appearance. … LHP Ashur Tolliver (hamstring) is throwing batting practice for Norfolk.
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