ST. PETERSBURG, FLA. — Before considering the next step for struggling right-hander Dylan Bundy, manager Buck Showalter said Saturday he wants to sit down with his young pitcher to see where his mind is at.
After Friday’s 14-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays, Showalter said there has been no consideration to shutting down Bundy, who has an 8.83 ERA over his past 11 starts after allowing six runs on two three-run homers over four innings Friday.
On Saturday, asked whether it’s important to keep Bundy on the mound through his struggles, Showalter said, “Yes and no.”
“This is not something [you decide] 20 minutes after the game is over,” Showalter said. “I talked to him a little bit down the runway when he came out of the game. But the emotion really for a player and sometimes for the staff, I think I’m going to let him soak in his emotions and soak in his thoughts, and I’ll probably sit down with him [Sunday] morning and kind of see kind of what he’s thinking and what he’s feeling.”
After Friday’s start, Bundy said his frustration level has reached a “10 out of 10.”
In 2017, the Orioles shut Bundy down almost two weeks before the season ended after he posted a 7.53 ERA in three September starts. Bundy’s innings total this season is still 19 2/3 innings shy of last year’s career high.
“We have shut him down, stretched him out, given him long work days,” Showalter said. “His innings count is in fine shape. That’s not a [concern] if you just go by that. But obviously there a level he’s not pitching to that he’s capable of, so does that mean you quit or keep trying? I know what Dylan’s going to say.”
Cobb hoping for Tuesday
Alex Cobb won’t make Sunday’s scheduled start with a blister that has lingered on his pitching hand, but he’s hoping he will be able to pitch Tuesday’s series opener against the Oakland Athletics at Camden Yards.
Cobb was scheduled to test his blister with a throwing session before Saturday’s game at Tampa Bay.
Left-hander Josh Rogers is scheduled to fill in for Cobb on Sunday, and it will likely be the rookie’s final start of the season. Rogers, who was acquired from the New York Yankees in the Zach Britton trade, has thrown 150 innings this season between the majors and minors.
Cobb dealt with the blister problem earlier this season, and has been given an extra day of rest for it. But it’s never forced him to miss a start.
“There’s a lot of pitchers who have this issue,” Showalter said. “It’s a constant issue for trainers around Major League Baseball to manage this, especially the younger players coming up through the minor leagues with the different baseball.”
Around the horn
Right-hander Pedro Araujo and Gabriel Ynoa are continuing their rehabilitation and progressing. Ynoa has a follow-up for a shoulder injury Tuesday and could begin throwing off flat ground. Showalter said the hope is both could pitch in instructional league.