As first reported by Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, the Orioles have demoted Brian Matusz to Triple-A Norfolk following another disastrous outing.
Matusz was shelled for eight earned runs in just 3 1/3 innings on Thursday night against the Cardinals.
The 24-year-old surrendered six earned runs in only 4 2/3 innings last week against the Reds and has allowed a total of 25 earned runs in 25 1/3 frames since returning from a lengthy early-season stay on the disabled list with an intercostal strain.
Matusz registered a 7-3 record, 3.63 ERA and 1.19 WHIP over his final 14 starts in 2010 and the Orioles were hoping for more of the same this year. But his fastball is down over 3 mph and his offspeed stuff is no longer fooling major league hitters.
Matusz is a great talent with a bright future in Baltimore, but something has clearly gone wrong.
The Braves have signed former football player and current outfielder Sanders Commings, an Augusta, Georgia native, to a minor league contract, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports.
Commings, 26, was a defensive back who played for the University of Georgia before being selected by the Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2013 draft. He appeared in two games in the 2013 season.
Commings also played baseball for Westside High School and was selected by the Diamondbacks in the 37th round of the 2008 draft. He chose to attend the University of Georgia instead. When football didn’t pan out, Commings started training with Jerry Hairston, Jr. Hairston said he was “blown away” when he saw Commings hit for the first time.
Obviously, Commings’ path to success as a professional baseball player will be long, but it’s a no-risk flier for the Braves. The club has past experience with football players, including Deion Sanders and Brian Jordan.
The next task for the Braves will be to acquire Ryan Goins from the Blue Jays. That way, players will look at the lineup card each day to see if it’s Commings or Goins.
On Thursday afternoon, Rays pitcher Chris Archer asked his Twitter followers, “Lots swirling around what needs to be changed about the game of baseball. What do y’all want to see changed, if anything, & why?”
Tigers ace Justin Verlander responded:
To that, Archer said:
For what it’s worth, Verlander hasn’t been much of a hitter. In 47 career plate appearances, he has three singles and no extra-base hits. And if the AL did get rid of the DH rule, the Tigers would have nowhere to put Victor Martinez. Verlander, though, would have an easier time pitching to opposing pitchers rather than their DH’s.