T.J. McFarland worked 4 1/3 innings yesterday in Toronto. An early exit by Britton would require some baton passing and really tax the bullpen.
The Orioles must make a decision on Freddy Garcia. They're willing to put him in the bullpen, though they would have to create a spot for him. Is he a better option in the rotation than Kevin Gausman or Jair Jurrjens?
Steve Johnson must wake up every morning cursing his left oblique.
Tsuyoshi Wada allowed two runs and five hits in five innings yesterday with Triple-A Norfolk, with two walks, no strikeouts and a hit batter. He threw 91 pitches, 51 for strikes.
Wada has given up three runs in his last two starts over 11 2/3 innings. He's making strides in some areas, but he's not ready to pitch in the majors.
Eddie Gamboa and his knuckler didn't allow a hit through seven innings yesterday at Double-A Bowie. He's not the answer. No way you continue that experiment in the American League East.
The Orioles will be linked to every available pitcher. Executive vice president Dan Duquette is scouring the market. That's certainly one way to clean up a rotation.
I'm interested to find out whether they'd be willing to trade Jake Arrieta after turning teams away in previous years. That seems to be the case.
They've reached a point where they'd consider making him a reliever, giving manager Buck Showalter a much-needed optional piece to the bullpen. Again, if room could be created for him. And if he were more effective, which is the obvious issue.
The Orioles could match up with another team that's willing to move an underachieving starter who may benefit from a change of scenery, but is that really what they need right now? Another experiment? Another attempt to catch lightning in a bottle?
They should stroll down another aisle while shopping for a starter. The challenge is steering teams away from their top pitching prospects.
They're not going to relinquish Gausman or Dylan Bundy. I'm sure that teams are gauging the availability of Mike Wright, Eduardo Rodriguez and Josh Hader.
As for the lineup, Matt Wieters batted sixth again yesterday - his 55th game in that spot - and went 0-for-4 to lower his average to .229. He's in a 5-for-37 slump, with three RBIs since June 5 and three extra-base hits since June 1.
Chris Davis was intentionally walked in the first inning yesterday to load the bases for Wieters, who fouled out. It's going to start happening with the bases loaded if Wieters doesn't heat up.
Does Showalter lower him in the order tonight against Indians right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez, who has never faced the Orioles? Put J.J. Hardy sixth?
What could it hurt?
Hardy is one of only six Orioles who have faced Jimenez, going 2-for-5 with a home run. Nate McLouth is 3-for-22 with seven strikeouts. Travis Ishikawa is 4-for-18 with a doube, home run and seven strikeouts. Chris Dickerson is 1-for-6 with a home run and four strikeouts. Danny Valencia is 1-for-6, and Alexi Casilla is 0-for-2.
Manny Machado has gone back-to-back games without a hit only once this season, on May 31 and June 1. He continues to lead the majors in doubles after collecting his 34th yesterday.
Machado homered on May 1, 4 and 5. He hasn't hit one since then.
Nolan Reimold went 1-for-4 with a strikeout yesterday at Bowie, making him 2-for-21 with three RBIs, two walks and eight strikeouts in six rehab games.
Do the Orioles activate him today or give him a few more at-bats to knock off the rust? If they do activate him, who gets removed from the 25-man roster?
Steve Pearce is on the disabled list, which puts Danny Valencia on thinner ice. However, Valencia is batting .379/.419/.655 in 31 plate appearances against left-handers. He's a nice weapon to bring off the bench.
The Orioles really need to find a trade partner for Travis Ishikawa. They're doing everything possible to keep him away from the Yankees.