08/22/2011 10:51 AM ET
Eyre: Happy to be back in Majors
Supported by brother Scott, Willie appreciates shot with O's
It was great to get the call that I was returning to the big leagues. I haven't pitched at this level since 2009, and it is exciting to be here. It has been a long road for me, but I worked hard and I did what I was supposed to do.
The road back started during Spring Training in 2010. I had a good spring, but it just didn't work out for me roster-wise. I went back down to the Minor Leagues, threw the ball well, but Texas did what they thought was right. I don't hold any grudges. They made the decision. They were always honest and up front with me, so I have no issues there.
Then, I went to Oakland. While with that organization I thought I threw the ball well, but again it came down to numbers. I took the out option in my contract, signed with the Baltimore organization this summer and have made the most of the opportunity.
When I got the call to join the Orioles, my brother Scott was very excited for me. I was really excited, too. But he may have been even more excited than I was. We talk a lot; we talk three or four times a week as we are really close. He knows what I have gone through. He fought through things and it worked out well for him. He is a good role model to follow.
He is retired now and, unfortunately, we never got the chance to pitch together here. That would have been awesome, and it would have been a great experience. Too bad it didn't happen, but we still have had the opportunity to play baseball for a living. He had a great career and he loved every minute of it. Now, he spends all his time with his family and traveling all over the place. He is having a lot of fun.
During the road back, I did my best to keep a positive attitude. I would tell my wife I am going to the ballpark each day to have fun, and if I am not having fun going to the ballpark then I am not going to keep doing it. I have had fun, she has had fun and we have had fun experiencing this whole ride. We have lived in new places, seen new things and have met a lot of wonderful people. It has been awesome.
She also has been supportive of my career. That is something people don't understand in this game. It is hard for families and wives and kids. We spend so much time at the park and it is tough on them. It is tough to see your six-year-old cry when you have to go on the road for eight days and she doesn't want you to go. Wives in this game are incredible women.
Now, looking forward, I am happy to be a part of this Orioles club. We have a lot of good guys here, so it is just about putting things together and going out and winning games.
Veteran hurler Willie Eyre has pitched sporadically in the big leagues since 2006. The right-hander was recalled by the O's from Triple-A Norfolk on Aug. 12. His older brother, Scott, pitched in more than 600 games for 13 big league seasons before retiring after the 2009 season.