After a disappointing debut against the Rays last weekend, the Orioles were hoping for a more stable showing from right-handed rookie Luis Ortiz when he took the mound again on Friday night. Unfortunately, the 22-year-old righty made it through just 1 2/3 innings before an apparent leg injury forced him to make an early exit from his first major league start.
The incident occurred in the top of the second inning, when Ortiz tried to beat Yoan Moncada to the bag on a grounder that skidded just past first base. He narrowly avoided a collision with Chris Davis, but may have landed too hard on his right leg and sustained an injury in the process. The rookie stayed in to pitch to Yolmer Sanchez and surrendered a walk before manager Buck Showalter and a team trainer came out to the mound to evaluate him, at which point he was quickly escorted from the field. The precise nature of the injury — and a timetable for Ortiz’s return to the mound this season — has not yet been revealed.
Jimmy Yacabonis stepped in to relieve Ortiz and induced a line out from Jose Abreu to bring a swift end to the inning. The Orioles’ offense scraped together six runs on a pair of solo home runs from Trey Mancini, Corban Joseph’s RBI single, and a handful of productive outs from Cedric Mullins and Adam Jones, but still trail the White Sox 8-6 in the ninth.
The Angels have placed Andrew Heaney on the 10-day injured list with left shoulder inflammation, the club announced Saturday. The move is retroactive to July 17, though it’s not yet certain that he’ll be cleared to pitch again by the end of the month.
It’s an unfortunate development for the 28-year-old southpaw, who has battled inflammation in his pitching elbow on and off since spring training. In fact, his arm issues date back several years, including the shoulder impingement that put him on the shelf in 2017 and the Tommy John surgery he underwent in 2016. With such a complicated medical history, it makes sense that the Angels would want to proceed with caution as they facilitate the lefty’s eventual return to the mound.
Given his ongoing struggles, Heaney has seen mixed results with the club in 2019. Prior to his recent IL assignment, he pitched to a 1-3 record in nine starts with a 5.09 ERA, 3.7 BB/9, and 10.6 SO/9 through 46 innings. Since the end of June, however, his starts have gotten shorter and shorter; he lasted just 4 1/3 innings in his final outing against the Astros, expending a tremendous 103 pitches and issuing two runs, two walks, and five strikeouts during the team’s eventual 7-2 win.
In a corresponding roster move, the Angels claimed lefty reliever Adalberto Mejía off of waivers from the Twins. Mejía, 26, is expected to be activated ahead of Saturday’s game versus the Mariners. Over 13 appearances with Minnesota, he turned in an 8.80 ERA, 7.0 BB/9, and 8.8 SO/9 in 15 1/3 innings.