Mahtomedi native Mike Baumann was called up to the major leagues by the Baltimore Orioles Monday, Sept. 7, and quickly picked up his first big league victory.
The 6-foot-4, 235-pound right-handed pitcher was summoned from the bullpen Tuesday night, Sept. 8, and pitched 3 1/3 innings of middle relief, allowing one run (unearned), in a 7-3 win over the Kansas City Royals, at Camden Yards in Baltimore.
Baumann’s second relief stint did not go nearly as well. More on that later.
Against the Royals, he retired 11 of 14 batters, allowing a single, double and walk, striking out one. His mother, Leslie, and two brothers were in the stands.
“There was a lot of adrenaline,” Baumann said, in a report on mlb.com. “Looking back, I don’t even know if I remember much of what happened on the mound. But just the feeling, walking off the field after hearing the fans, that was a cool moment.”
Orioles manager Brandon Hyde told mlb.com: “I just liked the aggressiveness in the strike zone. He challenged hitters. His pitch count was way down. He forced the action, and he has enough on his fastball to get it by guys and get some weak contact. So a really good first impression of Mike Baumann.”
On Sunday, Baumann gave up six runs in three innings against Toronto as the Blue Jays hammered the Orioles 22-7 in Baltimore. Toronto had 22 hits, including five home runs. Baumann yielded four hits, including a homer, and two walks.
Baumann, who turned 26 on Friday, led Mahtomedi to a 19-1 record and a state tournament berth his senior year, 2014. In three seasons at Jacksonville University, he posted a 16-8 record and 3.17 ERA. He was a third-round draft pick by the Orioles in 2017.
In four minor league seasons, Baumann was 28-17 with a 3.35 earned-run-average and 362 strikeouts in 368 innings. In 2019, he shared the Orioles minor league pitcher of the year award with another prospect. There was no minor league season in 2020. This season, he pitched at the A, AA, and AAA levels, posting a 4-3 record, 3.34 ERA and 77 strikeouts in 71 innings.
He was called up from Triple-A Norfolk, Virginia. In his last start in Norfolk, he struck out seven and allowed one run over six innings, lowering his ERA to 2.00 in six starts. He was ranked No. 9 or 10 among Oriole prospects, and third among pitchers.