A Return to Simplicity Has Turned Jason Hammel into the Orioles Ace
Before Jason Hammel could become an Opening Day starter, he had to revisit his simpler days of pitching. Before the crowds, before the expectations, before worrying about his career and where he fit in, he needed to go back to the time when the game was free of distractions, when baseball wasn't much more complicated that throwing a ball through a tire in his backyard as a kid.
The 30-year-old right-hander will start the Orioles' regular-season opener Tuesday afternoon against a Tampa Bay organization that drafted him. But before he could earn that honor, Hammel had to undergo a mental transformation that began after he was demoted to the Colorado Rockies' bullpen late in the 2011 season.
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