Right-hander Dylan Bundy ended a spring that hasn’t been kind to him with another rough start in the Orioles’ 7-3 loss to the Detroit Tigers, allowing three home runs in six innings and ending the Grapefruit League schedule for the club on a sour note.
A combination of home runs — three Wednesday and six in the spring — and an uncharacteristically low strikeout rate contributed to a lackluster statistical spring for Bundy. He ends the Grapefruit League season with a 7.41 ERA.
SARASOTA, Fla. — His two strikeouts gave him nine total in 17 innings, averaging 4.9 per nine innings. He struck out 8.53 per nine innings last year as a rookie.
Bundy grew more efficient as the outing progressed, retiring the final nine batters he faced after a fourth-inning home run by catcher James McCann to lead off the fourth inning.
All told, however, he was happy with the outing, especially in his ability to go six innings. Manager Buck Showalter agreed.
“One of them is a home run during the season,” Showalter said. “The rest of them are fly-ball outs. I thought he pitched well. I love where he got pitch count-wise. He actually kind of got a little ticked off, I think, and ramped it up a little bit. He was casting a little bit on his curveball, not finishing some. He got a chance to throw his cutter some later on in the outing. That’s about as good a return, if you look at the things that are really important in his outing today, he got them done. I would have signed up for that before the day started.”
In-game platoons: With the Tigers starting left-hander Matt Boyd and piggybacking him with right-hander Anibal Sanchez, Showalter got to use both halves of his corner outfield platoon. Joey Rickard and Trey Mancini started in the outfield — with Mancini rotating with Mark Trumbo between first base and right field — before the pair gave way to Seth Smith and Hyun Soo Kim once Sanchez arrived.
Davis homers again: The Orioles' first run came on a towering opposite-field home run by Chris Davis, who was the team's designated hitter. Davis ends the spring batting .195. All three of his home runs went the opposite way.
His three home runs are tied for the most on the team this spring.
Chris Dickerson hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth to cut the deficit to 7-3, but Caleb Joseph struck out with the bases loaded to end the game.
Jones gets a game: Center fielder Adam Jones returned to camp almost a week ago after helping Team USA win the World Baseball Classic but merely worked out until Thursday, when he finally got into a game.
Jones batted second and played center field, staying in longer than nearly all of the other regulars. After a groundout in his first at-bat and a strikeout swinging in his second, Jones hit a single up the middle in his third trip.
Asher debuts: The final game of the Grapefruit League season was the first in an Orioles uniform for right-hander Alec Asher, who was acquired from the Philadelphia Phillies for future considerations Tuesday. Asher faced four batters, coaxing two quick ground-ball outs before allowing a single and closing the inning with a strikeout.