Orioles prospect Jake Arrieta to debut against Yankees tomorrow

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Now that all service time considerations are moot top prospects are being called up in waves. Stephen Strasburg and Mike Stanton debuted last night, Brad Lincoln and Jose Tabata are being called up today, and Jake Arrieta is set to join the Orioles’ rotation tomorrow night against the Yankees.
Arrieta signed for $1.1 million as a fifth-round pick in 2007 and has since emerged as one of the better right-handed pitching prospects in the American League. He posted a 3.40 ERA and 148/56 K/BB ratio in 150.2 innings between Double-A and Triple-A last season and has been even better this year with a 1.85 ERA and 64/34 K/BB ratio in 73 innings at Triple-A.
His control has been shaky, but Arrieta misses lots of bats with a good fastball-slider combination and projects as a potential middle-of-the-rotation starter (or perhaps a late-inning reliever, if his control remains an issue). He’s already 24 years old, so after 28 good starts at Triple-A it makes sense for the Orioles to give him a shot, although I’m not sure if facing the Yankees is a particularly good idea for any pitcher’s debut.

Dodgers upset with Héctor Neris after Thursday’s game

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July hasn’t treated Phillies closer Héctor Neris well. Entering Thursday, he had allowed runs in three of his last four appearances, blowing two saves in the process. His struggles continued as he allowed a two-out solo home run to Alex Verdugo in the bottom of the ninth inning on Thursday afternoon, closing the deficit to 7-6. Thankfully for the Phillies, he was able to get the final out, getting Justin Turner to fly out to right field. An excited Neris looked into the Dodgers’ dugout and yelled an expletive.

The four-game series between the Dodgers and Phillies had quite some drama. After Matt Beaty hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the top of the ninth inning on Tuesday, Neris threw a pitch at the next batter, David Freese, seemingly in frustration. Neris was suspended three games. He appealed his punishment, which is why he’s been allowed to pitch. In the fourth inning of Thursday’s game, Max Muncy and Beaty stepped on first baseman Rhys Hoskins‘ ankle on consecutive plays. That, along with his own struggles, explains why Neris might’ve been amped up after closing out the ballgame.

The Dodgers were, understandably, not happy about Neris yelling at them. Several players shouted back, including Clayton Kershaw and Russell Martin. An unamused Muncy glared at Neris. Martin suggested to Neris that they meet in the hallway.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said after the game, “I think we played this series the right way, played it straight. To look in our dugout and to taunt in any way, I think it’s unacceptable. Look in your own dugout.”

Muncy said, “He’s blown about eight saves against us over the last two years. I guess he was finally excited he got one. Whatever.”

Neris attributed his outburst to emotions, saying, “It’s a great win for my team and just I let my emotion get out.”

In baseball, everyone is pro-showing-emotion when it’s himself and his teammates, and against when it’s players on the other team. Muncy got into a back-and-forth with Giants starter Madison Bumgarner after flipping his bat and watching his long home run at Oracle Park last month. Bumgarner jawed at him and Muncy said, “I just told him if he doesn’t want me to watch the ball, go get it out of the ocean.”

Neris, however, is the last guy on the Phillies who should be antagonizing the Dodgers after his terrible decision to throw at Freese, not to mention his overall poor performance against them. The Phillies were pigs in mud who wanted to wrestle and the Dodgers jumped in with them for some reason. Thankfully, the two teams are done playing each other for the rest of the regular season.