Orioles open with high hopes, lots of pitchers



BALTIMORE (AP) — Dan Duquette spent his first winter in Baltimore scanning the globe in search of starting pitchers.

The Orioles new vice president of baseball operations signed two left-handers who excelled in Japan, pulled off a pair of trades and signed a free agent whose most notable accomplishment is an imperfect perfect game.

Duquette also reshaped a flawed, overworked bullpen.

It’s now up to manager Buck Showalter to sort it all out. That task begins in earnest on Sunday, when the Orioles hold their first spring training practice in Sarasota, Fla.

The hope is that Baltimore, which finished with the worst ERA in the American League, will have a fighting chance at ending a run of 14 straight losing seasons and be competitive in baseball’s toughest division, the AL East.