Baltimore Orioles Claim Right-Handed Reliever Off Giants

The Baltimore Orioles have claimed a rookie reliever off waivers to add to their strong bullpen.
May 14, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Nick Avila (58) pitches against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning at Oracle Park. Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
May 14, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Nick Avila (58) pitches against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning at Oracle Park. Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports / Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
In this story:

The Baltimore Orioles claimed relief pitcher Nick Avila from the San Francisco Giants on Monday. Avila was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk and placed on the minor league IL with a right shoulder injury.

The 26-year-old had made eight appearances for the Giants this season, pitching in 11.2 innings, while striking out 14 batters. However, he struggled with allowing base runners, surrendering 12 hits and ultimately posting a 8.49 ERA.

His debut stint doesn't tell the entire story, though.

In 2023, he spent the entire year with Triple-A Sacramento and was impressive. In the hitter friendly PCL, Avila pitched in 56 games, posting a 3.00 ERA and striking out 64 batters in 72 innings. In a notable season, he also won 14 games to zero losses.

At Triple-A in 2024, Avila has a 6.75 ERA and 12.5 K/9 in 9.1 innings.

The right hander will sit mid-90s with his fastball, which he throws 34.7 percent of the time. He will also mix in four other pitches, using a slider, knuckle curveball, sinker and cutter. His cutter is the most used of his secondary pitches.

In his big league stint this season, both the slider and knuckle curveball saw whiff percentages of 20 percent or better, with a 27.8 percent rate on the curve.

The Orioles bullpen has been very strong so far this season, seeing Craig Kimbrel, Jacob Webb and Yenier Cano all having sub-3.00 ERAs in 30 or more games.

Avila is set to add more firepower in the later innings and prove himself in a loaded pen when he gets healthy.


Published
Sean O'Leary

SEAN O'LEARY