UTSA’s Hallmark on Robert Orloski: ‘He’s eager to pitch, and I’m eager to pitch him’

By Jerry Briggs
Special for The JB Replay

UTSA coach Pat Hallmark said late Friday night that freshman pitcher Robert Orloski is healthy and that he possibly could return to game action as early as this weekend against the South Florida Bulls.

“Rob’s fine,” Hallmark said. “For a freshman, it’s a long season. It’s a longer season than (freshmen) are used to. He had a little spell there where he wasn’t pitching his best. I just think it was at that point, where a lot of freshman hit a little bit of a wall physically.”

Orloski, from Middleton, Idaho, opened the season with some fanfare, starting in Game 1 for the Roadrunners. In 13 appearances this season, mostly as a Friday night starter, he has worked 48 and 2/3 innings.

Over that stretch, he has posted a 3-4 record with a 6.10 earned run average.

The hard-throwing righthander seemed to be at his best in March, when UTSA won home games against the Grand Canyon Lopes and the 10th-ranked East Carolina Pirates. In each game, the Roadrunners won against formidable opponents and quality pitchers.

Notably, Orloski pitched six innings to beat East Carolina and All-American righthander Trey Yesavage at Roadrunner Field on March 22. In April, however, the freshman suffered a few tough outings.

As a result, Hallmark decided to sit him down for awhile.

“He said he was fine,” the coach said. “His velocities were fine. But, when you’re used to playing — at the most — 30 to 35 games, and we’re (approaching) 50 now … For freshmen, it’s more than they’re used to, so we just gave him a little break.”

Asked if Orloski might pitch either of the final two games against South Florida, Hallmark stopped short of saying it would definitely happen.

“He’s ready,” the coach said. “He’s healthy. He’s eager to pitch and I’m eager to pitch him. So, I think you’ll see him. If you don’t see him this weekend, it’s because we’re pitching really well (which) is a good thing.

But we’re looking to pitch him.”

As of Friday night, Hallmark said he planned to start Zach Royse in Game 2. His Game 3 starter? Undetermined.

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