When Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette was approached by a small group of reporters Sunday, he was asked about Dylan Bundy and whether he'd ever seen a young pitcher get his pro career off to a start as dominating as Bundy's has been through his four outings.
"Have you?" Duquette fired back.
Bundy, who will make his fifth pro outing tonight at home in Salisbury against Asheville at 7:05, has put together 13 hitless and shutout innings so far with one walk and 21 strikeouts.
Four different South Atlantic League teams have sent 40 batters up against him with one reaching base on a walk in his third inning of his third outing. The others went 0-for-39 against the 19-year-old right hander.
"Well, he's off to a good start in pro ball," Duquette said. "Our program is designed to get him acclimated to being in a five-day rotation and he's doing real well with that at Delmarva.
"He understands what we are trying to accomplish. He did a couple of outings at three innings and the last outing at four innings. He's going to do a couple more at four innings, then a couple at five innings and then we'll evaluate where he is at that point.
"He's going to do the five-inning starts at Delmarva," Duquette said.
While Bundy will likely make multiple outings going five innings when he gets to that point, Duquette was saying that Bundy is likely to make his next two four-inning starts with Single-A Delmarva and then at least three more going five innings each as a Shorebird. That would take him through his first nine professional outings and he could possibly be promoted at that point.
"The important thing (right now) is for him to get command of his fastball and as he is pitching more innings, he'll be able to also work on his secondary pitches. His breaking pitch and his changeup," Duquette said when asked if Bundy is being challenged right now.
"He's a very accomplished pitcher and a real determined kid."
When I covered Bundy's last start, when he pitched four perfect innings with six strikeouts last Tuesday against Greenville, Bundy said after the game that he was being challenged by opposing hitters despite the fact none has a hit off him yet.
"People say I'm not being challenged, but I'm being challenged by working on my secondary pitches and developing myself as a better pitcher," Bundy said. "It might not look like they are challenging me but they really are. They are live batters and I'm working on my secondary pitches as well and command of the fastball.
"You can't be worried what might happen in two months. You never know what is going to happen tomorrow. You have to take it day-by-day and get your work in. They have a plan for me and I'm fine with it."
Click here to read that story from Bundy's last outing.
The Shorebirds were not exactly packing them in for Bundy's two home starts so far, but attendance has been up for an April Tuesday home game and his first two home starts were on a Tuesday. The team has drawn a total of 4,375 fans for his two home outings. Delmarva's first two Tuesday home games last year drew a total of 1,892 fans.
If you are thinking about going to tonight's game in Salisbury, for tickets and more information, you can contact the Shorebirds at 410-219-3112.