Left-hander Dontrelle Willis has dropped his grievance against the Orioles, and will return to the organization tomorrow, his agent confirmed.
Willis, the 2003 NL Rookie of the Year and 2005 NL Cy Young Award runner-up, was signed by the Orioles to a minor-league deal during spring training to be a situational left-handed reliever. Two weeks ago, he left Triple-A Norfolk saying he was told he was getting his release, but the Orioles contended that was never the case and he left without the club's permission. They placed him on the minor league restricted list.
Now, the sides have finally come to an agreement. Willis will be used as a starting pitcher, previously a point of contention between the pitcher and the club, and Willis has dropped the grievance.
Willis will report to the Orioles' extended spring training team in Sarasota tomorrow to build his arm strength for a starting role, and he'll eventually report back to Norfolk, his agent, Matt Sosnick, said.
"They reached out to Dontrelle personally a couple times," Sosnick said. "The whole thing took too long. I still don't understand it."
Willis was 0-2 with a 4.91 ERA in three relief appearances over 3 2/3 innings for the Tides before leaving the team in late April.
Once he gets to Norfolk, Willis will join a crowded rotation that includes Tommy Hunter, Joel Pineiro, Chris Tillman, Jason Berken, Brad Bergesen and Steve Johnson. The Orioles are likely to call up another Norfolk starter, left-hander Dana Eveland, to start Friday's home game against Tampa Bay.
Willis dropping his grievance was first reported by ESPN.com.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times