Ford and Flaherty: Both in Baltimore, but will both be playing today?

Outfielder Lew Ford has arrived in Baltimore. He tweeted a photo of his view overlooking Camden Yards.

With the Athletics sending left-hander Travis Blackley to the mound today, Ford could appear in his first major league game since September 2007.

Orioles manager Buck Showalter will have to choose between two left-handed hitters to play second base. Not exactly an advantageous matchup, but that’s how the roster is constructed until Brian Roberts and Robert Andino come off the disabled list this week.

With Steve Tolleson back at Triple-A Norfolk, the choice comes down to Omar Quintanilla or Ryan Flaherty.

flaherty atbat white sidebar.jpgQuintanilla has started the last five games, so either he’s the prohibitive favorite or Flaherty is due to make an appearance. Depends how you look at it.

Flaherty has one at-bat since July 23. He started four straight games and collected a hit in each of them, including two home runs, before Quintanilla pushed him to the bench.

Flaherty says he’s healthy. Showalter has just chosen to play Quintanilla, who’s 8-for-22 with the Orioles and has a hit in five of his six starts. Last night marked his third mult-hit game.

Quintanilla also made a nice leaping catch last night to rob Coco Crisp.

“Everything’s fine. I feel good,” Flaherty said.

“Like I said from the get-go, whatever I can do to help the team win, whether it’s come off the bench, whether it’s play second base or play the outfield, I’ll do it just to help this team win.”

None of the current Orioles have faced Blackley. Chris Gomez is 2-for-2, but he’s long gone.

The Orioles will be confronted with some interesting roster decisions Monday and Tuesday.

Does Quintanilla get the boot when Roberts or Andino return? More than one team claimed him off waivers from the Mets before the Orioles worked out a deal for cash considerations. Are the Orioles still fully committed to keeping Flaherty, the Rule 5 pick who can’t be optioned without passing through waivers and being offered back to the Cubs?

Does Ford get designated for assignment to open up the other roster spot? Do the Orioles cut ties with Endy Chavez, who’s batting .188?

Will the Orioles really shake up the roster and add a position player by Tuesday’s non-waiver trade deadline?

Stay tuned.

As for the series in New York that begins Monday, here are the pitching matchups:

Monday: Miguel Gonzalez (2-2, 4.28 ERA) vs. Freddy Garcia (4-4, 5.16 ERA)
Tuesday: Chris Tillman (3-1, 1.66 ERA) vs. Ivan Nova (10-4, 4.08 ERA)
Wednesday: Zach Britton (1-0, 5.74 ERA) vs. Phil Hughes (10-8, 4.08 ERA)

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