Jordan Lyles Officially Joins the Baltimore Orioles

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Jordan Lyles officially joins the Baltimore Orioles, a move that was agreed upon more than three months ago. They had agreed to terms with the veteran just ahead of the midnight expiration of Major League Baseball’s collective bargaining agreement on December 2nd.

Contract Details

The deal is worth $5.5 million in 2022, plus a $500,000 signing bonus. It includes an $11 million team option for 2023 or a $1 million buyout. This is the largest deal given to a free agent under General Manager Mike Elias.

What he Brings

The main thing that Lyles brings to the Orioles is leadership.  The veteran will immediately play an important role for their pitching staff. He brings durability to a pitching staff that has only one other proven starter in John Means. He pitched 180 innings last season, a mark that would have led the Orioles’ 2021 rotation. His leadership is also another reason why he was signed.

His 2021 Season

He spent 2021 with the Texas Rangers and made 30 starts. Those 30 starts were a career high along with a career high in innings. His ERA was very high at 5.15, but showed improvement after September 1st, recording a 2.87 ERA and a 0.99 WHIP.

That is when he decided to limit his four-seam fastball usage and throw more sinkers, sliders and changeups. Also, in five outings after the changes, he allowed only two home runs in 31 1/3 innings.

Getting Back to 2019 Form

The hope is that he gets back to his 2019 form. He was traded at the midseason deadline from the Pittsburgh Pirates to the Milwaukee Brewers and had a 2.45 ERA in 11 starts down the stretch and had seven wins and one loss and helped the Brewers to the NL Wild Card.

Where he Fits in

One of the main questions is where will he fit in with Baltimore. Circumstances may determine that he will be the number two starter behind the left hander Means. He has played in a total of 289 games and will need to step up immediately and be that veteran starter that this team needs.

After him, the third, fourth and fifth starters will be a collection of younger arms competing for spots. And as we know stability to the Orioles’ starting rotation is something that is needed after they posted a 5.84 ERA last year, by far the worst in the major leagues.

Main Photo:
Embed from Getty Images

Players Mentioned:

Jordan Lyles, John Means