Bullpen-hopeful Strop believes in O's future

Bullpen hopeful Strop believes in O's future

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles reliever Pedro Strop is one of 10 players on the 40-man roster out of options, and the right-hander is focused on cracking the team's Opening Day bullpen.

"I'm aware of [being out of options], but I don't want to go anywhere, I want to stay here," said Strop, who would have to be put on waivers if he doesn't make the 25-man roster out of camp. "I know this team is going to be good. I don't want to miss that party."

Acquired from Texas late last year as the player to be named later in the Michael Gonzalez trade, Strop estimated he threw about three bullpen sessions before arriving at camp, where he's thrown another pair. So far, he said, everything is feeling good, and the 26-year-old Strop hopes to make a strong case in a bullpen competition that -- like the battle for the starting rotation -- is strong on numbers.

Strop posted a 2.05 ERA in 23 total appearances last year, and allowed just one earned run on eight hits over 12 1/3 innings with the Orioles. In Baltimore, the right-hander also collected 12 strikeouts against three walks. Small sample size aside, Strop hopes to build on that late-season success, and he is confident the Orioles can collectively do the same.

"The way we played the last month of the season, I'm sure we can just start doing the same thing," Strop said of an Orioles team that went 15-13 in September. "[This year] we don't have to wait until the last month."