Pre-game notes (w/more quotes)

The plan for Brian Roberts is to play him today and tomorrow, rest him Sunday, play him Monday in Toronto, possibly rest him on Tuesday and play him on Wednesday.

"He stated that he's ready to go," interim manager Juan Samuel said. "At the same time, we want to be a little bit careful."

Nick Markakis is fine. Samuel wanted to give him the night off.

"He's been playing hard and he deserves a day off," Samuel said.

"As we all know Nicky wants to play, and if you put it in Nicky's hands he's going to try to talk you out of it. And so I basically told him, 'You are not playing tomorrow'. And for him, my office was closed. Don't come in, you are not playing."

If Ty Wigginton's suspension is upheld, Luke Scott and Jake Fox can play first base. Of course, Fox would have to stay on the roster once Matt Wieters is activated on Sunday.

Samuel agreed that three games for Wigginton is "harsh." He also said Wigginton has been fined a "very substantial" amount.

"I think that's the first time I've seen Wiggy like that," Samuel said. "Wiggy is kind of quiet, but I guess it was probably so obvious and he knew he was right, so he reacted the way he reacted."

The Orioles still believe umpire Gary Darling missed the call.

"Again, like we all said, these guys are human, they're not perfect," Samuel said. "It's just a situation that we were in. We thought he was out and it's one of those that have gone against us, one of many that have gone against us, and I think guys have probably gotten sick of that because we're not getting a whole lot of breaks."

I asked Samuel last night if a season's worth of frustration led to the outbursts, not just one blown call, and he shot down my theory. Now he's agreeing. OK, I'm glad we got that settled. I wanted to make sure I've been following the right team.

Samuel also expects to be fined, though he hasn't heard from the commissioner's office.

"I think they've already got some of my money from Boston," he said, grinning.

Samuel watched the replay of the controversial play at first base, but he didn't want to relive his meltdown on the field.

"I went home and started watching ESPN," he said, "and when they brought it up, I changed channels."

The Orioles are hoping that Scott Moore clears waivers and stays in the organization, though he can opt for free agency.

Should the Orioles start playing Moore at shortstop in Triple-A to increase his value? After all, Julio Lugo's ability to back up Cesar Izturis made Moore expendable. Or is it smarter to keep playing Moore at second base so he improves?

Moore was drafted as a shortstop, but he hasn't played there regularly in a long time.

"I think Scotty just needs to continue to play the positions we know he can play," Samuel said. "We know he's a good third baseman, we know he can play first, we know now he can play second. He'll probably play some short, but it also goes with who's playing down there in Triple-A and what their needs are down there."

It's a moot point if he leaves the organization.


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