"I don't think I've ever had a pitcher pitch for me that I've never met," Buck Showalter said, "and tonight was a first."
Ramirez didn't arrive in Baltimore until after 7 p.m., Showalter said, and wasn't in the bullpen until 8:30. A little more than an hour later, the relief pitcher struck out two batters and walked one in a hitless final frame.
"We had all these things going around," Showalter said. "'The package has landed. The package has arrived. It's in the bullpen now.'"
The O's selected Ramirez's from Triple-A Norfolk prior to Monday's series opener against the Rangers and optioned righty Evan Meek to give the team another rested bullpen arm behind Ubaldo Jimenez.
The 32-year-old pitched eight scoreless innings for the Tides in five relief appearances before getting the callup, striking out 14 without allowing a walk. He is a career 23-21 with a 3.42 ERA in 423 Major League games over eight seasons with Colorado (2006-07), Kansas City (2008), Boston (2009-10), San Francisco (2010-11, '13) and the Mets (2012).
Meek, 31, is 0-3 with a 7.47 ERA in 15 games for the Orioles this season and last pitched on Sunday, allowing four earned runs. The move helps the O's cover themselves in the event of another short start and gives them another option with lefty reliever T.J. McFarland scheduled to pitch on Tuesday.
Considering the circumstances, Showalter was impressed with his newest arm. Ramirez went to a full count with the first batter he faced before striking him out. From there, Showalter felt Ramirez settled in.
"He was solid," Showalter said. "He had command of all his pitches."
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. David Wilson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.