Wei-Yin Chen was the Orioles biggest winner last season, and the team was careful to monitor his starts, slipping in an occasional day or two of rest.

The caution has continued into this spring. A week into spring training, the biggest winner of 2012, made his first start of the spring.

It went well.

On a blustery day, Chen allowed two hits in two innings in the Orioles 4-1 loss on Saturday to the Tampa Bay Rays before 4,696 at Charlotte Sports Park and pronounced himself satisfied.

“I’m feeling pretty satisfied for today,” Chen said through a translator.

“I’m really excited. I feel really good. It’s been too long for me.”

Over the winter, the Taiwanese native trained with Brady Anderson and a number of teammates in California, and was happy with how it went.

On Saturday, he allowed both hits in the first innings, and finished with 23 pitches, 17 for strikes.

“I think my command and breaking ball control is getting better and better this year,” Chen said.

“He threw a couple of sliders. Mostly, it was going to be a fastball day. It was a good start for him. It was good to get him out there. He's where he needs to be," manager Buck Showalter said.

"We're still easing him in."