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Orioles remove struggling Brian Matusz from rotation because “he can’t defend himself properly”

Sep 7, 2011, 10:15 AM EDT

matusz wide getty Getty Images

As of yesterday afternoon the Orioles weren’t sure what to do with Brian Matusz, but they’ve now decided to bump the struggling left-hander from the rotation and have him work exclusively out of the bullpen for the remainder of the season.

Matusz has followed up an impressive rookie season by going 1-7 with a 9.84 ERA this year, allowing more home runs per nine innings than anyone else in baseball history with at least 10 starts.

Buck Showalter explained the decision to Brittany Ghiroli of MLB.com:

There are two sides to it. I’m a father first. I don’t like to see anybody get beat up on. I don’t think that Brian is at a point right now where he can defend himself properly. It’s not going to be a matter of him throwing 94 or 93 miles per hour. He can pitch just like he is, stuff-wise. It’s just command issues and repeating his delivery and a lot of things he’s aware of. I feel for him, but not to the point where … he knows nobody is going to feel sorry for him in that other clubhouse. He’s got it. He understands a lot more than what people may perceive about what’s going on.

In other words, the Orioles don’t think Matusz is capable of getting big-league hitters out at this point and there’s no sense in letting him serve up batting practice to a salivating lineup every fifth day.

  1. yankeesfanlen - Sep 7, 2011 at 10:19 AM

    And I was hoping he’d pitch tomorrow on three days rest.

  2. Panda Claus - Sep 7, 2011 at 10:39 AM

    I’ve had trouble defending my eyes whenever I’ve watched him pitch recently.

  3. boston25rocketman - Sep 7, 2011 at 11:25 AM

    I can’t imagine him succeeding in Baltimore at this point, dude needs a change in scenery.

  4. boxchain has a loose changeup - Sep 7, 2011 at 12:39 PM

    In other words, we’ve failed to coach him properly, so we’re going to stash him in the bullpen until he magically figures it out himself

  5. Old Gator - Sep 7, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    That would be a good reason for removing Roger Clemens from the rotation as well, no?

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