Matusz says finger is "not a huge issue"

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles left-hander Brian Matusz says he developed a wart on his middle finger "a couple months ago" and thought it might be a blister. He's never had one before and alerted head athletic trainer Richie Bancells after reporting to camp with the other pitchers.

"It's not bothering me," Matusz said. "It doesn't affect me at all. It's on the side of my middle finger. The only time it actually comes into play is when I throw my curveball and it touches the seam. It doesn't irritate it. I threw curveballs today and it was fine."

Matusz, who tossed two scoreless innings against the Minnesota Twins, will board a 6 a.m. flight to Philadelphia tomorrow and be examined by a specialist.

"It's just there and we don't want down the road ... say I'm pitching on a cold night in Baltimore and I throw 15 curveballs that night and one ends up ripping open the wart," he said. "I've never had one before. I don't know if that could happen. We're just taking precautionary measures to get rid of it.

"They're not going to freeze it or burn it and maybe I'd miss two weeks. They're sending me to have a specialist look at it and decide whether to have it removed with a laser. That would be an option, and it might set me back. two or three days where I can't do anything.

"My goal is to not miss any starts. I don't know if I'll actually have the procedure done. Since it's not bothering me, it's not a huge issue. I just want to take care of it now so it never becomes an issue when the season comes around."

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