Showalter talks about Guthrie, Hardy and pitching

Let me begin by saying I don't have any inside weather information. The Orioles like their chances of playing tonight, but that's all I know. They're not making any guarantees, and they haven't set an exact time when they'd announce a postponement if the rain doesn't cease.

The pitching picture is a bit fuzzy. OK, it's really, really fuzzy.

Jeremy Guthrie did some long-tossing and threw off an indoor mound. He could make Sunday's start, but it's also possible that he could wait until Tuesday in New York.

"As good as can be expected," manager Buck Showalter said. "A little winded, a little weak. He threw the ball OK. It's more of an endurance thing now. We'll try not to push him too much where he'd have any form of setbacks.

"I think we'll probably make a definitive call on that after the game. It could be tomorrow, but we'll probably do it after the game tonight. Andy (MacPhail) and I have been talking a lot, after the game last night and today, about a lot of different plans and contingency stuff. It's kind of a moving target right now. We'll see how we get out of this game tonight."

Showalter would like to have another bullpen arm. Troy Patton was summoned from Triple-A, but not formally recalled. Even if J.J. Hardy avoids the disabled list, and that looks more likely, Patton could be added to the 25-man roster over the weekend.

"Even if you're rained out tonight, you'd have 18 innings probably tomorrow," Showalter said. "There's that infamous window, but problem is, that window is with drizzle and cold. The worst case scenario for us - and I'm sure for (Ron Washington) to some extent - is to start and stop. That would be a challenge for us."

Also, the Orioles might need a starter for Sunday, and Chris Jakubauskas is the leading candidate because he would be working on normal rest after pitching Tuesday against Norfolk State.

In this morning's blog entry, I wondered how the Orioles would make room on their 25-man roster. The bullpen is filled with players who are out of minor league options. The club will stay with a four-man bench, largely because Felix Pie, Robert Andino and Jake Fox are out of options (and Fox is the backup catcher.)

I suggested that the Orioles could option Chris Tillman, who started last night. He's one name that's been discussed. Another is Brad Bergesen, who also has options and pitched on Wednesday.

As for Hardy, we could see him back in the lineup over the weekend.

"It's kind of a day-to-day thing," Showalter said. "I think we might have caught it before. The challenge is he's never had it before, so there's nothing to weigh it against. I was talking to him before the game and he was throwing some. I said, 'Have you ever had anything like this before?" Because if he had, he'd know the difference. We'll try to err on the side of caution and we'll see where we are tomorrow. I think I could use him if I had to."

The Orioles haven't scheduled an MRI for Hardy.

"I think we caught it, kind of like Luke's thing," Showalter said, referring to Scott's groin injury. "Fortunately, we have some guys who provide some depth for us. Izzy had a good night last night."

And finally, Double-A Bowie's game at Harrisburg has been postponed because of rain. It will be made up on May 29 as part of a doubleheader.

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