SARASOTA, Fla. - Brian Matusz won’t throw today after being hit on the left biceps during yesterday’s simulated game. He’s wearing an ice pack on his arm to reduce the inflammation, but he told reporters this morning that there’s only a small bruise. No pain that should keep him from pitching Saturday.
Matusz is hoping to throw tomorrow, as long as the inflammation stays down.
“I feel pretty good about it today,” he said. “It’s not too swollen. It’s a little bit black and blue. It’s starting to bruise a little bit. The trainer said it’s a little bit warm, which means there’s a chance for a little more inflammation, so they want to keep ice on it all day so we can prevent that. That’s pretty much all we can do, just take it day by day. Today, the goal is to put ice on it every couple hours and hopefully it feels better tomorrow so I can play catch.”
The Orioles haven’t told Matusz that his start at Tropicana Field is in jeopardy. No alternative plans have been discussed with him.
“I don’t think it’s going to be something that’s going to push me back too far,” Matusz said. “Hopefully just today. Hopefully today’s the only day that I can’t throw, but all we can do is take it day by day. Like I said yesterday, you can’t predict how it’s going to feel. Today, we just want to play it safe, keep the ice on it, so that there’s no issue tomorrow. We’ll see how it feels tomorrow.”
The Orioles haven’t scheduled any tests on Matusz’s arm.
“It’s just a matter of keeping the inflammation down,” he said. “Everything else is fine. It doesn’t hurt me at all. It’s not hurting. The strength is there.
“If it reacts the way it did last year, it’ll probably just continue to get darker and darker until it kind of bleeds itself through and heals.”
Jake Arrieta was supposed to pitch today, but manager Buck Showalter is starting left-hander Chris George. Showalter wants to keep his options open in case Matusz can’t take the ball Saturday.
Otherwise, he’s running out his opening night lineup.
For the Orioles:
Brian Roberts 2B
Nick Markakis RF
Derrek Lee 1B
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Luke Scott LF
Adam Jones CF
Mark Reynolds 3B
Matt Wieters C
J.J. Hardy SS
Chris George LHP