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After lesson, Orioles reliever Darren O'Day on his own with the changeup

Todd Frohwirth was a bit of a cult hero in Baltimore back in the early 1990s when the submariner pitched three seasons for the Orioles, going 17-13 with a 2.71 ERA and 10 saves in 186 relief appearances.

Frohwirth has been a scout with the Orioles for several years -- and he has a pretty good reputation for spotting talented players.

In spring training, he has taken on another role as a mentor to the Orioles’ side-armed relief pitcher Darren O'Day, helping to teach the right-hander a changeup.

Well, that tutelage has at least temporarily ended as Frohwirth left Orioles camp Saturday to go to Arizona to resume scouting duties.

But it ended on a good note.

O’Day threw a perfect inning Saturday and mixed in four or five changeups.

“It went about as well as it could have. It was exciting because they were all near the strike zone. I got some early swings on them, some foul tips,” said O’Day, who struggled against left-handers last season and wanted to add another weapon. “The best changeups I've ever thrown in my career, so I'm excited about it.”

O'Day said he believes he is gaining enough confidence in the pitch that he could use it when the games count.

“Yeah, that's why we're practicing it now. That's the idea,” he said. “My first goal was just not to hit [the batter], and it ended up being a strike. He fouled it off.”

Orioles manager Buck Showalter said Frohwirth joked after seeing O’Day’s success on Saturday that his work was done here. And O’Day is OK with that.

“I owe him a great deal. Him and all the pitching coaches that we have here helped me, but Todd especially. He says I did it all,” O’Day said. “The way he broke it down made it a lot easier on me. For a guy who's done it and been there and been through it to help lead me through it made it a lot easier.”

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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