The Orioles claimed reliever Patrick McCoy off waivers from the Detroit Tigers on Friday afternoon, adding left-handed bullpen depth to a relief corps that could be without Andrew Miller.
After spending parts of eight seasons in the minors, the 26-year-old McCoy made his major league debut this past season with the Tigers.
McCoy posted a 3.86 ERA in 14 relief innings. He held left-handed hitters to a .208 average, but he wasn't used exclusively in a situational role. He made eight appearances of one full inning or more. He also missed nearly a month in July with a right-hamstring strain.
He was 3-0 with a 3.00 ERA in 45 1/3 relief innings between Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo.
Orioles scouts were impressed with McCoy because of his effectiveness against left-handed hitters, executive vice president Dan Duquette said. The 6-foot-4 McCoy mixes a low-90s fastball with a mid-80s slider and an occasional mid-80s changeup.
McCoy could have been available in the Rule 5 draft had he gone unclaimed and been outrighted, but instead the Orioles added a reliever who could be valuable to the major league club because he's a left-hander who still has minor league options.
With Miller hitting free agency, Brian Matusz and T.J. McFarland are the only remaining left-handed relievers who were in the Orioles bullpen throughout last season.
McCoy was a 10th-round selection of the Washington Nationals in 2007 out of Tucson (Ariz.) Sahuaro High School.