Late Thursday night and into Friday morning, as the Orioles doubleheader with Pittsburgh dragged on and Buck Showalter was recycling pitchers from the first game, I heard several remarks both in the press box and on Twitter that Chris Davis should be activated to pitch in relief.
Davis' memorable relief outing in Boston was two years ago today, and the folks at MASN posted a YouTube video of it on their Facebook page.
There are two types of games where position players end up on the hill: the blowouts where a manager wants to save his relief pitchers for another day, or an extra-inning marathon in which all available pitchers are used up. I love the latter, if for no other reason than we get moments like this.
Davis got the win over former Orioles first-round pick Darnell McDonald, an outfielder who, like Davis, was his team's only option. Wheels within wheels.
It was a pretty insane game. Davis was the Orioles' eighth relief pitcher, and the bullpen combined to give up eight hits and one earned run in 13 1/3 innings of relief. Davis struggled from the stretch a bit, but his pitches moved all over the place. That Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Adrian Gonzalez struck out swinging against him is, without question, one of the more embarassing displays in Red Sox history. And given his final line of two innings, two hits, no runs, one walk, and two strikeouts — plus the typical bit of drama, Davis would likely fit into the Orioles bullpen well.
Then again, Davis wasn't yet the eater of worlds he eventually became in April 2012. Combine that with the oblique strain that is keeping him out of action, and I doubt anyone would risk him taking the mound again. But if it comes down to it, wouldn't it be a nice option?