KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Orioles are optioning designated hitter Danny Valencia to Triple-A Norfolk to make 25-man roster space for trade acquisition Francisco Rodriguez.
With the Orioles scheduled to face right-handed starters over the next four days – Ervin Santana and Jeremy Guthrie here in Kansas City and Boston’s Ryan Dempster and Brandon Workman on Friday and Saturday, respectively – the club doesn’t need a right-handed designated hitter in the short term.
That also signals more playing time for left-handed hitting rookie Henry Urrutia, who will make his third big-league start tonight against the Royals and is 4-for-12 so far.
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The club was also considering designating right-hander Jairo Asencio for assignment as the corresponding move to make room for Rodriguez, but the Orioles feared losing him on waivers.
So for the time being the Orioles will play with a three-man bench and eight-man bullpen.
The Orioles have also received trade interest in Chris Dickerson, whom the club designated for assignment over the weekend. He’s expected to be dealt within the next few days.