Updates on Lebron and Atkins

SARASOTA, Fla. -The Orioles will modify pitcher Luis Lebron’s throwing program by keeping him on flat ground, rather than having him participate in the usual bullpen sessions.

Lebron underwent ligament-reconstructive surgery on his right elbow in May, and manager Buck Showalter wants to make sure he doesn’t push himself while attempting to keep up with the other pitchers in camp. Lebron has thrown two sides sessions since pitchers and catchers reported last weekend.

“It’s not a setback. Nothing is hurting him or anything,” Showalter said. “I just don’t think he’s quite ready in this environment with people throwing. You can tell with his facial expressions and body language, Mark (Connor) feels like there’s the lure for him to push himself when he shouldn’t. He’s come so far, so we’re going to back him off a little bit. You won’t see him throwing off the rubber down there, but he’ll probably throw off the flat ground we’ve got constructed over there.”

Pitcher Mitch Atkins still can’t get on the mound or catch a break. He’s been dealing with an oblique injury, and he was sent back to the team hotel today with a stomach virus.

Atkins would have pitched in one of the first exhibition games, but he’s falling behind.

The Orioles will play an intrasquad game on Feb. 27 on the back field with the Camden Yards dimensions while construction continues at Ed Smith Stadium.

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