06/09/10 11:32 PM ET
O's Arrieta to dive right in against Yanks
By Tim Britton / MLB.com
A fifth-round Draft pick out of Texas Christian University in 2007, Arrieta has been on the Major League radar for some time now. He was 6-2 with a 1.85 ERA with the Tides this season, holding opponents to a .189 batting average in 12 games (11 starts). Over the course of three Minor League seasons, Arrieta is 23-18 with a 2.89 ERA, and he's averaged just under a strikeout per inning.
Whereas the Nationals decided to break Strasburg in against the downtrodden Pirates, the Orioles are doing Arrieta no such favors. He will make his debut against the defending World Series champions and the American League's best offense in the Yankees.
"We feel that he's one of the big guys that we'll be counting on in the future," interim manager Juan Samuel said. "Why not bring him [up]? I know we're going to throw him in the fire against these guys, but hey, we don't get to pick who we play or who we face. It's a challenge for him. We'll see how he reacts."
One of the concerns for Arrieta heading into the start is his control. Arrieta doesn't just lead the International League in ERA; he also leads it in walks, with 34 free passes in 73 innings. That rate is a little bit higher than it has been through the first two seasons of Arrieta's professional career.
Wildness isn't something the O's want to combine with the Yankees' characteristic patience at the plate. New York is near the top of the AL in walks and leads the league in on-base percentage.
The Yankees, in turn, are led by Robinson Cano, who collected yet another multihit game on Wednesday night. It was his third consecutive multihit game and 11th in his past 14. Since May 16, Cano is hitting an even .500 (29-for-58), and that's in spite of an 0-for-12 stretch at the end of last week. Of course, it helps that he followed that 0-for-12 by going 9-for-12 right after it.
Yankees: Burnett faces favorable opponent
A.J. Burnett will take the hill for the Yankees hoping to turn in yet another fine start against the Orioles. Burnett has made two starts against Baltimore in 2010 and has yet to allow an earned run. He tossed eight shutout innings at Camden Yards on April 29 in a 3-0 Yankees win, and then the right-hander gave up only one unearned run in 7 1/3 against the O's on May 4 in a 4-1 win. Burnett is 11-2 vs. Baltimore in his career and 5-0 at Camden Yards.
Orioles: Guthrie bumped back; Bergesen in 'pen
Pitching Arrieta on Thursday to keep him on his regular schedule bumps Jeremy Guthrie back a day until Friday's series opener with the Mets. It also means that, for the time being, Brad Bergesen is still in the O's bullpen. ... Arrieta will become yet another young cog in Baltimore's rotation. Arrieta, who turned 24 in March, will be the third-oldest starter in the O's rotation, ahead of fellow youngsters Brian Matusz (23) and Chris Tillman (22).
Hall of Fame switch-hitter and current Orioles broadcaster Eddie Murray visited the Yankees' clubhouse before Wednesday's game, spending some time with New York switch-hitters Mark Teixeira and Nick Swisher. Teixeira has credited Murray for being the reason he started switch-hitting when he grew up in Maryland, while Swisher had Murray autograph a ball for him. "Greatest switch-hitter ever," Swisher said. ... Garret Atkins' second-inning RBI single gave the Orioles their first lead against the Yankees in a span of 52 innings. ... After dropping their first meeting of the season to Baltimore, the Yankees have beaten the Orioles 10 straight times. They will go for their third consecutive sweep of the O's on Thursday.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.