SARASOTA, Fla. - Today’s first workout consisted mostly of pitchers fielding practice, which rivals watching paint dry in terms of excitement.
A group of pitchers threw inside the covered batting cage, which is off-limits to reporters. They also underwent the biomechanical pitching analysis designed by new director of pitching development Rick Peterson.
“We’re breaking them up. It’ll go on for at least two more days. We just don’t want to disrupt too much. We should get most of the information back in 10 days,” manager Buck Showalter said.
“It’s basically, from a health-standpoint, identifying the issues where stress is being put, but it also helps them mechanically. It’s not like you’re going to find something on everybody. Sometimes you’re just going to say, ‘This is a good delivery.’
“He was talking about different guys that they had in the past. Even (Mike) Mussina was tested back in ‘90 and they came out of that test that he had almost a perfect delivery, and you know the rest of the story. It’s not like we’re going to take Darren O’Day and change his delivery or anything. There are certain things that give you deception in your delivery.
“Obviously, it’s not free. It’s something ownership has supported and we hope it gives us an edge and we can get ahead of some things. It can help us in the June draft, help us in trying to identify things before they happen and get ahead of them.”
Showalter views these tests as an extension of the physicals. “It’s two or three days out of the spring,” he said.
Meanwhile, Showalter agreed with Jim Johnson’s assessment that the reliever will be a week behind after dealing with lower-back tightness.
“That’s what our time frame is, and it’s really a week behind because we’re making him a week behind,” Showalter said. “Jim’s going to make our club and we know where the finish line is with him, so he’ll get plenty of work. We’ve actually built in some time with him in case we want to back off him again.”
Pitcher Dennys Reyes and catcher Ronny Paulino are absent from camp because they’re having visa issues. They’re expected here by the middle of the week.
Left-hander Ryan Edell’s status hasn’t changed. He’s expected to retire for family reasons. It’s not health- or Orioles-related, according to Showalter.
Third baseman Mark Reynolds and shortstop J.J. Hardy passed their physicals and are cleared to practice. Nick Markakis will take his physical in a few days.
Second baseman Brian Roberts is working out at the minor league facility at Twin Lakes Park, out of view of the media.