ST. PETERSBURGH, Fla. - I’m heading to the visiting television booth at Tropicana Field for my O’s Xtra segment on MASN2, but I wanted to pass along a few pre-game quotes from manager Buck Showalter.
On Luke Scott:
“He’s day-to-day. Hopefully, we got ahead of it a little bit. He was feeling it a little bit earlier. He said it wasn’t a big deal. He got it wrapped. When he came out of the batter’s box on the potential double play, he was a little tender with it. We hope we kind of caught it. He was smart with it.”
Showalter joked about looking smart when he inserted Felix Pie as a pinch-runner - we were unaware of the injury until after the game - and Pie threw out B.J. Upton at the plate in the bottom of the seventh.
“I really thought there was a two-out hit to left field and Pie would do a little better,” Showalter said. “I should have kept my mouth shut last night, but honesty took over. I don’t know where that came from.”
On Scott’s availability for tomorrow’s home opener:
“We’ll see. He’ll probably fight a little bit tomorrow because I know how much he’ll want to be in there for Opening Day.”
On Zach Britton:
“He’s got a tough act to follow. I’ll promise you this, after today’s game’s over, I will say the same about Zach Britton as I did before the game starts. You take a lot of things in consideration about what’s going on today. You have a team pretty hungry over there to win a game. He’s got his work cut out for him. That’s why they call it the big leagues. There’s somewhat of development going on, but it’s about giving the Orioles a chance to win a baseball game.”
On batting Matt Wieters fifth:
“As opposed to who kind of thing. I think when you think about presence and guys that present a real dilemma for the other team, it’s more about at this point where we are, who is going to protect Vlad (Guerrero) the most, and kind of the way Tampa would look at it. I think in Pie’s first start, it would be a little tough to push him there right now. We think Matt’s our best option there.”