I am happy to be back in Baltimore. It’s the first time I’ve repeated with a team ever, which is different for me, but also really nice because there are a lot of familiar faces. This team knew who I was and what I am capable of doing, so I think it was a no-brainer for both of us. It’s an opportunity for me to possibly get back into the big leagues this year and for them it’s a back-up arm. If they do make a push or make some trades, either way, now they’ve got someone they can count on to put up some innings when they need it. They knew what they were getting and expect me to get back to doing what I was doing earlier in the year. I’m someone they can lean on.
I was a starter here in 2012. I always started when I was in Triple A. And then I started a couple times when I was up and down from the big leagues. I had a handful of relief appearances, but I was always the long guy, still an over the top regular pitcher. It’s a different role now, but hopefully I can offer something they see themselves needing. We’ve got four left-handed relievers here, with two in the big leagues, so it’s not a place that’s going to make it super easy for me to get to the big leagues. But regardless, it’s good to be back.
The first time I threw when I got here, it had been 16 days since I was in a game, which is a long time, especially for a reliever. In Atlanta, I was throwing so much that it was easy to stay sharp. My first time out, I had a walk, which I don’t do very often. I think it was only the third one I’ve had this season down here, but I wasn’t thrilled about it. I threw again the other day and had a six-pitch inning, which is more like who I am and how I work generally. I’m feeling good again. It doesn’t take long. I have a little bit of an achy arm right now, but with all that time off and then getting back out there, it was bound to happen. It’s nothing alarming.
The one thing I always liked about Buck Showalter was that he lets you know where you stand pretty much. I remember one occasion a few years ago where he got on me about something (I was the long guy and was only able to throw three innings out of the bullpen and got worn out). He kind of got on me a little bit, but we talked about it and it was fine. That’s all you can ask for as a player. I like him. He’s good with his players.