Mike Wright is making his case for a spot on the 25-man roster

Baltimore Orioles right-handed pitcher Mike Wright is currently competing for a spot in the Opening Day rotation and has looked solid.

In two outings this Spring Training, the 28-year old Wright has allowed one run in four innings. Wright has been able to mix in a cutter, to work with his sinker as well. In Tuesdays matchup against the St. Louis Cardinals, he retired six of seven batters. It was a far cry from his performance as a reliever in 2017, pitching to a 5.76 ERA, allowing 26 hits, five homers and walking seven batters, with a .350 wOBA against him.

Wright has four pitches in his arsenal, a four-seam fastball, a changeup, a slider, a sinker and now the aforementioned cutter. Four of his pitches, outside of the changeup, have shown to generate a high number of ground balls. Despite that being the case, he still has a lower ground ball rate than average, with a career percentage of 40.7% and a fly ball rate of 39.4%.

One thing that Wright has seemed to work on is keeping his pitches lower in the zone. With his added cutter, the pitch runs low and away from right-handed hitters and runs inside on left-handed hitters. He has also made better pitch selection, something that seems to have come with more maturity and a better physique. His best pitch in the past was his slider, which has 12-6 movement and generates a high number of ground balls.

The good part for Wright is that if he doesn’t make the rotation on Opening Day, he can make the club as a reliever. With his cutter, he now has a pitch that throw hitters off. Not a bad situation to be in. One pitcher that was in a similar situation was closer Zach Britton, who worked specifically on his sinker while in the bullpen. Maybe Wright could do the same with his cutter.

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(Photo Credit: Baltimore Orioles Photo Day)

Kyle Andrews

Born in Norfolk, VA, raised in the Baltimore area and currently living there. Originally pursuing a degree in exercise science at McDaniel, Andrews became interested in sports writing. He was the sports editor of McDaniel's newspaper in 2014 and became an English major, and hasn't looked back since. Bylines at Fox Sports 1340 AM, Bullets Forever, Baltimore Beatdown, Underdog Dynasty and many other sites.