Grayson Greer Rodriguez
- Bats Left, Throws Right
- Height 6' 5", Weight 220 lb.
- High School Central Heights High School
- Debut April 5, 2023
Pitcher Grayson Rodriguez was the 11th pick of the 2018 amateur draft by the Baltimore Orioles out of a high school in Texas. He turned down a scholarship offer from Texas A&M University to sign with the Birds.
He began his pro career that same year with the GCL Orioles and went 0-2, 1.40 in 9 games. In 2019, he had an excellent season with the Delmarva Shorebirds of the South Atlantic League, going 10-4, 2.68 in 20 starts. He struck out 129 batters in 94 innings, while walking only 36. he was named to the American League team at the 2019 Futures Game. After the season, he was named the Most Outstanding Prospect in the Sally League and was both a mid-season and post-season All-Star.
He spent 2020 at the Orioles' alternate training site while the minor leagues were shut down by the Coronavirus pandemic and in 2021 resumed his playing career with the Aberdeen IronBirds of the High-A East. After going 3-0, 1.54 in his first 5 starts, he was promoted to the Bowie BaySox of the Double-A Northeast and continued to dominate, going 6-1, 2.60 in 18 starts. Between the two teams, he pitched 103 innings and struck out 161 batters. He was considered the top pitching prospect in baseball when spring training finally opened in 2022, after the 2021-2022 lockout and the question was when would the Orioles call him up to make his debut with the team. As expected, he started the season in AAA, with the Norfolk Tides of the International League and continued to blow opposing batters away: in 11 starts, he was 5-1, 2.09, with 80 strikeouts in 56 innings. The countdown to the Show was now going on in earnest, especially after the Orioles promoted top position player prospect Adley Rutschman to the big league squad at the end of May. But then, Grayson's promising career hit a roadblock when on June 5th, he was diagnosed with a grade 2 right lat strain, putting him on the shelf for an extended period. The good news was that tests did not indicate any damage to his arm or shoulder. He managed to return late in the year, making rehabilitation outings for the Aberdeen IronBirds of the South Atlantic League and with Bowie, before returning to Norfolk late in September. However, he was unable to make his big league debut. In all that season, his pitching line was 6-2, 2.62 in 17 games - all starts - and 75 2/3 innings.
He was with the Orioles for spring training in 2023, having been added to the team's 40-man roster, and while there was only an outside chance that he would start the season with the team, the countdown was back in earnest as to when he would first make it to the Show. It was clearly a matter of only a few weeks of tuning up in AAA at most. Indeed, after being sent down to begin the season, it was announced on April 4th that a call-up to Baltimore was imminent, and he made his major league debut the next day, starting against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Field, where he was matched up against none other than Jacob deGrom. He had a rough 1st inning, giving up a pair of runs on a double by Adolis Garcia and a single by Josh Jung, but he settled down after that, not giving up any other runs and retiring 13 of 15 batters. The Orioles also managed to score a pair of runs against deGrom in the top of the 5th, so while they lost the game, 5-2, Rodriguez ended up with a no-decision.
- Jake Rill: "Emotions run high after G-Rod's impressive debut", mlb.com, April 5, 2023. 
- Dick Scanlon: "Healthy G-Rod back on MLB's doorstep", mlb.com, March 2, 2023. 
- Jonathan Mayo: "What to expect from O's RHP Rodriguez (MLB No. 7) in bigs", mlb.com, April 4, 2023. 
- Zachary Silver: "Baseball's top pitching prospect could be out until '23: Orioles drop series to Guardians after getting news of Rodriguez's status", mlb.com, June 5, 2022. 
- Nick Trujillo: "Rodriguez continues to dominate at Triple-A", mlb.com, April 20, 2022.