Orioles break out interesting lineup vs. Phelps (Sabathia in, Phelps out tonight)

Rule 5 pick T.J. McFarland makes his first major league start tonight to open a three-game series against the New York Yankees at Camden Yards.

McFarland is the 12th starter used by the Orioles this season, matching last year’s total.

Manager Buck Showalter is breaking out his right-handed lineup, which is interesting, considering that the Yankees are starting right-hander David Phelps.

Nick Markakis is leading off. J.J. Hardy is batting third. Nate McLouth has been lowered to eighth. Alexi Casilla is at second base. Danny Valencia is the designated hitter.

I’m sitting here confused.

Right-handers are batting .274 against Phelps this year, compared to .233 by left-handers. Maybe that’s it.

For the Yankees
Brett Gardner CF
Jayson Nix SS
Robinson Cano 2B
Vernon Wells DH
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Zoilo Almonte LF
Chris Stewart C
David Adams 1B
Alberto Gonzalez 3B

CC Sabathia LHP

For the Orioles
Nick Markakis RF
Manny Machado 3B
J.J. Hardy SS
Adam Jones CF
Chris Davis 1B
Matt Wieters C
Danny Valencia DH
Nate McLouth LF
Alexi Casilla 2B

T.J. McFarland LHP

Injury update: Steve Johnson (oblique) made 50 throws from 90 feet today at the Ed Smith Stadium complex in Sarasota. Twenty-five throws, rest and 25 more to complete the session.

The next step is extending the distance to 120 feet.

Update: Well, that explains the Orioles’ right-handed lineup.

The Yankees have scratched Phelps from his scheduled start tonight and will go with left-hander CC Sabathia, who was supposed to pitch Saturday. The Yankees have not announced who will start tomorrow.

Right-handed hitters bat .275 against the Yankees ace while lefty batters hit .214 this season.

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