Tillman said every time it seemed like he would have a chance to pitch in Anaheim, he was sent down to the minors. That will change tonight, when Tillman starts against the Angels in front of a large group of friends and family.
"It's big. You always want to go home. It's been a while since I have seen my family," said Tillman, who has reserved at least 20 tickets for tonight's game. "It's fun to pitch with them there. They have seen me pitch a bunch of times live, but this will be cool because it is home."
Tillman grew up in Fountain Valley, Calif., in Orange County, following the Angels and players such as Troy Glaus and Jarrod Washburn.
- Roberto Alomar, former Orioles second baseman, elected to club's Hall of Fame
- Robert Andino has fond memory of Orioles — even after they traded him to 'Alaska'
- Orioles still looking for an answer to fifth starter question
- Orioles photo day [pictures]
- 2014 Orioles spring training [Pictures]
- Projecting the Orioles' Opening Day roster
See more photos »
- Sights and sounds from Orioles FanFest [Video]
- Chris Tillman
- Baltimore Orioles
See more topics »
"I grew up as an Angels fan. Really, both Angels and Dodgers, but I was more of an Angels fan," Tillman said. "I went there all the time. I used to tell [former Orioles' teammate Kevin Gregg] I used to go to a lot of games that he pitched when I was in high school."
It's such a homecoming for Tillman that he expects to stay with his family instead of at the team hotel.
But he said he doesn't expect there to be any nerves when he steps on the mound.
"I think there are more nerves pitching in front of your hometown fans [in Baltimore]," Tillman said. "Those are the guys you want to impress the most. They are like a 10th player. I mean, you pitch in front of your family your whole life, so I think it is another game."
Showalter talks to Bundy
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he called top pitching prospect Dylan Bundy on Wednesday to see how he was doing. Bundy is in Sarasota, Fla., after having a platelet-rich plasma injection into his right forearm Wednesday. The 20-year-old has to rest his arm for six weeks to make sure the procedure can be effective. And Showalter assumed that would be tough for Bundy.
"He's OK, a little frustrated," Showalter said. "I told him be sure you're not sneaking out and throwing somewhere."
Around the horn
Showalter said Miguel Gonzalez threw a side session Wednesday and will pitch Friday as regularly scheduled. The team had considered pushing Gonzalez back a day. … Saturday's starter is still listed as TBA. … The Orioles won 16 games this April, tying the club record for the month. They also won 16 games in April in 1969, 1997, 2005 and 2008.