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Jake Odorizzi

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Jacob Todd Odorizzi

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Pitcher Jake Odorizzi reached the majors with the Kansas City Royals in 2012.

As a high school senior, Odorizzi was 14-0 with a 0.08 ERA, allowing just 1 earned run over nearly 90 innings. He was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers in the supplemental first round of the 2008 amateur draft. Despite an opportunity to play baseball and football at the University of Louisville, he was signed by scout Harvey Kuenn Jr. for $1.06 million. He made his pro debut that summer with the AZL Brewers.

In December 2010, Odorizzi was traded to the Royals with Alcides Escobar, Lorenzo Cain, and Jeremy Jeffress for Zack Greinke, Yuniesky Betancourt, and cash. He reached the majors as a September call-up in 2012, and he made his big league debut on September 23rd, making a start against the Cleveland Indians. He gave up 3 earned runs over 5 1/3 innings, taking the loss. He did not last long with the Royals after that, as on December 9th, they packaged him with Wil Myers, Mike Montgomery and Patrick Leonard in a deal to the Tampa Bay Rays for pitchers James Shields and Wade Davis and IF Elliot Johnson.

Odorizzi made 7 appearances for Tampa Bay in 2013, including 4 starts, and went 0-1, 3.94. He spent the bulk of the year with the AAA Durham Bulls, for whom he went 9-6, 3.33 in 22 starts. He struck out 124 opponents in 124 1/3 innings in the International League. He then made the Rays' starting rotation out of spring training in 2014. In his first outing of the year on April 4th, he defeated the Texas Rangers, 8-1, for his first major league win. he had a fine rookie season, making 31 starts and logging 168 innings in going 11-13, 4.13. In 2015, he missed a few starts due to injury, but still pitched 169 1/3 innings in 28 starts. His record was 9-9 and his ERA improved to 3.35. He had struck out 174 batters as a rookie, but this went down to 150 in his second year as he was less focused on trying to overpower batters, and more on making good pitches.

On May 29, 2016, he had the finest start of his career thus far, but was still charged with a loss against the New York Yankees. He was perfect through the first five innings until Dustin Ackley reached on an error by SS Brad Miller with one out in the 6th. The Yankees did not have a hit until one out in the 7th when Brett Gardner drew a walk on a full count and Starlin Castro followed with a home run. Unfortunately for Jake, it was enough to give the Yanks a 2-1 win, even though they did not record another hit in the game (Odorizzi left after 7 innings). It was the first time they had won a game with a single hit since 1914.

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