BOSTON - It’s been another slow day covering the Orioles.
They draft Cal Ripken’s son and John Russell’s son - who just happens to be sitting in their clubhouse - and Brian Graham’s nephew. They activate Zach Britton from the 60-day disabled list and option him to Triple-A Norfolk. They transfer Stu Pomeranz to the 60-day DL. They sign 49-year-old Jamie Moyer to a minor league contract and announce that he’s starting Saturday for the Tides. They put Double-A Bowie pitcher Mike Wright, last year’s third-round draft pick, on the disabled list with a hamstring injury. They place Lew Ford on Norfolk’s temporary inactive list.
OK, that last one isn’t a biggie, but I’m still counting it.
If there’s time, the Orioles might squeeze in a game against the Red Sox at Fenway Park.
I thought it was supposed to rain all week here, but the sun’s been shining and both teams are taking batting practice.
Now let’s see if they can avoid playing extra innings for a change.
Manager Buck Showalter told reporters that Moyer is “committed to two or three starts” with Norfolk, “and we’ll see where he’s at.”
Executive vice president Dan Duquette mentioned to Showalter the possibility of signing Moyer a few days ago.
Still no decision on Saturday’s starter against the Phillies at Camden Yards.
“We’ll pitch it here from the people we have or go get somebody,” Showalter said.
Chris Tillman is starting tonight for Norfolk. Tommy Hunter is scheduled to pitch tomorrow, followed by Jason Berken on Friday. The Tides list Saturday’s starter as TBA.
Britton was “ready to be optioned to a team,” Showalter said.
Britton can’t be called up for at least 10 days unless he replaces a player going on the disabled list.
Britton was removed after six innings and 80 pitches last night because he was losing effectiveness. He’s fine physically.
“He pitched OK,” Showalter said. “The game dictated it as much as him.”
Second baseman Brian Roberts will complete his rehab assignment after Norfolk’s game on June 11. Could he be activated the next day?
“It’s a possibility, but we’ll see,” Showalter said. “It’s going to be up to Robby as much as anything.”
Reliever Matt Lindstrom threw from 120 feet today at extended spring training, but he still hasn’t climbed back on a mound.
“We’ve got a full-time person assigned to him so he doesn’t do something he’s not supposed to do, because he’s really champing at it,” Showalter said. “We’re fortunate that (the ligament in his middle finger) wasn’t torn all the way. If he pushes it too quick and it tears, it’s potentially a career thing. Dr. (John) Wilckens is really trying to impress upon him how lucky he was, to catch it that early.”
Outfielder Nolan Reimold still hasn’t been cleared to start baseball activities.
“He’s about the same today,” Showalter said. “He’s stepped up some of his exercises. He’s just got one little spot that he’s still got some tingling in. They’ve got to get rid of that first.”
Catcher Taylor Teagarden is supposed to start hitting tomorrow.
Showalter noticed that Russell was getting “a little antsy” during the First-Year Player Draft until his son, Steel, was chosen by the Orioles in the 32nd round.
“Left-handed hitting catcher who can throw a little bit, and that kind of pedigree - I’m glad it was us,” Showalter said. “I’d hate to do the negotiations now.”
If Steel is assigned to short-season Single-A Aberdeen, he’ll be relatively close to Camden Yards. If he’s assigned to the Gulf Coast League team in Sarasota, he’ll be close to his family that lives in Bradenton.
Showalter also was pleased that the Orioles drafted Ryan Ripken.
“I know he’s well-thought of,” Showalter said. “He’s a basketball player, too. I heard he’s pretty good. But I know it gives us quite a glut of potential South Carolina guys.
“First of all, this kid’s got a chance to be a good player. His last name being Ripken is after the fact. He’s an interesting prospect. He’s had the right things taught and said to him, and I’m sure he’s got a grip on reality of how professional baseball works, growing up in it.
“Obviously, you can’t teach 6-6 and left-handed. That happens naturally. Good genes.”