The Orioles have re-signed right-hander Thomas Eshelman to a minor league contract, MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko reports (Twitter link). Eshelman chose to become a free agent last month rather than accept an outright assignment to Baltimore’s Triple-A team.
In his second consecutive year of swingman work for the O’s, Eshelman posted a 3.89 ERA over 34 2/3 innings, starting four of his 10 outings. He had only an 11.2 K%, continuing his near career-long trend of not missing many bats. While Eshelman’s Statcast numbers aren’t anything to write home about, his return to the organization gives the Orioles another option as they figure out their pitching mix. Eshelman’s ability to contribute a spot start is useful, particularly in a rotation that may feature several young hurlers who may still be building up their innings.
Of course, Eshelman is himself only 26 years old, and he was a second-round pick for the Astros in the 2015 draft. He has a 4.22 ERA over 514 1/3 career innings in the minors (with the Orioles, Phillies, and Astros) to go along with his 5.22 ERA, 12.4 K%, and 6.5 BB% in 70 2/3 Major League innings with Baltimore.