Pre-game this and that

In his last 14 appearances, reliever Koji Uehara has surrendered only one earned run over 17 innings.

Manager Buck Showalter has noticed.

However, he’s not ready to campaign for Uehara’s return in 2011.

“I don’t throw out what’s going on here for a year and three-quarters,” Showalter said. “I know what I’ve seen since I’ve been here. I can see why he was somebody that was coveted to bring in. Keeping him healthy I know has been a challenge, but it’s pretty obvious when he’s healthy that he can make a really good contribution. I’ve been fortunate to have a lot of guys’ health fall on me in a good way.

“Where that fits down the line and what happens, I’m just trying to evaluate him while he’s healthy. Then I’m sure there will be some medical discussions from our people about what the risk factor is there. But I don’t think now is the time to talk about it a lot. He’s pretty good.”

Jake Fox and Cesar Izturis are 2-for-5 lifetime against Rangers left-hander C.J. Wilson. Brian Roberts is 4-for-12 and Ty Wigginton is 2-for-6. Nick Markakis is 2-for-9.

In six home starts, Jake Arrieta is 1-2 with a 6.21 ERA. Most recently, he held the Angels to two runs and four hits in a career-high 7 2/3 innings.

Arrieta has walked 40 batters this season, but only nine have scored.

Markakis and his wife, Christina, visited the new Safeway in Towson this afternoon as part of the store’s Grand Opening. For an hour, the couple volunteered on behalf of The Right Side Foundation to bag groceries at the check-out line and collect donations for the Maryland Food Bank. They greeted patrons and Nick posed for photos and signed autographs for fans.

In one hour, The Right Side Foundation raised $275 for the Maryland Food Bank. Safeway also presented a check to the foundation for $5,000, which will be used to benefit children in distress throughout the state of Maryland.

Ty Wigginton has been named the Orioles’ winner of the Heart and Hustle Award, which he’ll receive before tomorrow afternoon’s game against the Rangers at Camden Yards.

The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association (MLBPAA) announces 30 preliminary winners, honoring active players who demonstrate a passion for the game of baseball and best embody the values, spirit, and tradition of the game. One player from each team is selected.

As the season draws to a close, all alumni and active players will vote for the overall winner. Previous recipients of the award include David Eckstein (2005), Craig Biggio (2006, 2007), Grady Sizemore (2008) and Albert Pujols (2009).

The final winner will be announced on Nov. 5 at the 11th annual Legends for Youth Dinner in New York. This event is the primary fundraiser for the series of free Legends for Youth Baseball Clinics which impact more than 6,500 children each year, allowing them the unique opportunity to interact with and learn from players who have left a lasting impact on the game of baseball.

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