The Matusz relief experiment after two games

Brian Matusz made his second relief appearance tonight for Triple-A Norfolk, and he lasted one inning against Charlotte before Tides manager Ron Johnson went back to his bullpen.

Matusz replaced starter Jason Berken with two outs in the seventh and was charged with two runs and two hits, with two walks, one strikeout, one wild pitch and one balk. He stranded two inherited runners in the seventh, but Zach Phillips replaced him with two outs in the eighth.

Matusz made his relief debut on Wednesday against Gwinnett and allowed two runs and five hits in three innings, with two walks and five strikeouts.

J.C. Romero is the only left-hander in the Orioles’ bullpen with Troy Patton on the disabled list. They’re in the process of evaluating Matusz in the role, and executive vice president Dan Duquette indicated that the former first-round draft pick could be called up after a few appearances if the results were favorable.

Phillips, also a lefty, picked up the win tonight with 1 1/3 scoreless and hitless innings. He isn’t on the 40-man roster and the Orioles passed up the chance to select his contract last week, instead trading for Romero, who served up a tie-breaking, two-run homer to Prince Fielder Friday night in Detroit.

Ryan Flaherty, starting in left field tonight for the Tides, went 4-for-4 with a game-winning home run. He has seven hits in the last three games.

Flaherty could be the next man up when the Orioles go back to a four-man bench.

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