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Injured Orioles Ace Could Make Season Debut Thursday

Kyle Bradish could return from injury as soon as Thursday

Baltimore could soon have two aces in their rotation. Orioles right-hander Kyle Bradish is expected to return from the injured list in time for Thursday’s start against the Yankees.

It’s been 11 days since Kyle Bradish made his first rehab start after suffering a right UCL sprain. Now, the 27-year-old right-hander is set to return to Baltimore after tossing five innings in his third rehab start Friday.

Earlier this week, Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said he wanted Bradish to reach two milestones before being recalled—five innings and 80 pitches. Well, Bradish came close to clearing the second milestone on Friday, throwing 77 pitches, 49 of which were for strikes. Hyde announced on Saturday that Bradish’s next start will come for Baltimore.

“He threw the ball really well last night, and our medical team talked to him this morning — our pitching guys as well — and he feels great,” Hyde said. “We’re just looking right now when to slot him in, but he’s going to be with us soon.”



Kyle Bradish Expected to Make His Next Start in Baltimore

Bradish made his first rehab start on April 16th, throwing three scoreless innings with Double-A Bowie. He then moved up to Triple-A, giving up four runs over 3 ⅓ innings, throwing 64 pitches on April 21st. His workload steadily increased and after five innings of one-run baseball on Friday, Baltimore decided Bradish was ready to return.

Kyle Bradish finished fourth in AL Cy Young voting last season, pitching to a 2.83 ERA over 30 starts. He was expected to form a powerful one-two punch with Corbin Burnes atop the Orioles rotation, before spraining his UCL.

Baltimore’s pitching staff is getting closer to full strength. Left-hander John Means is scheduled to make his sixth and likely final rehab start with Triple-A Norfolk on Sunday. The 31-year-old has been sidelined with a left forearm strain and could rejoin the Orioles as soon as next weekend.

With the return of Bradish and Means imminent, Albert Suárez and Cole Irvin will likely be bumped from Baltimore’s rotation. However, Suárez has pitched 11 1/3 scoreless innings over his first two starts, while Irvin threw seven scoreless innings against Oakland on Saturday. So, the Orioles may have some tough decisions to make.

Baltimore’s three righties, Grayson Rodriguez, Dean Kremer, and Corbin Burnes, are scheduled to open the upcoming series against the Yankees. Kyle Bradish pitched every fifth day during his rehab assignment, but he’ll likely start Thursday on five days of rest.


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