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Showalter speaks after 11-0 loss

The Orioles suffered their fifth shutout of the season tonight and their second of the homestand. They were 7-0 all-time against the Astros at home. Tonight marked the first time that Miguel Gonzalez lost consecutive decisions in 34 career starts, leaving him tied with Ken Dixon for the franchise record. Gonzalez allowed nine runs (four earned) and nine hits in 3 2/3 innings. His issue?

Steve Johnson and game updates (O's lose 11-0)

Pitcher Steve Johnson will take his injury-rehab assignment to Double-A Bowie for Saturday's game against Portland at Prince George's County Stadium. Johnson, on the disabled list with a strained left oblique, was 1-2 with a 5.49 ERA in four starts at Triple-A Norfolk. He threw two shutout innings with the Gulf Coast League Orioles to start his rehab assignment and allowed two runs in six

O's down 4-0, pregame quotes from Showalter

Well, that escalated quickly. Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez retired the Astros in order on only five pitches in the top of the first inning. He gave up four runs on two doubles, a single and a home run while throwing 24 pitches in the second. Catcher Jason Castro led off the inning with a double, but Gonzalez retired the next two batters on pop ups.

Updated rotation, and Duquette talks about trade

Right-hander Bud Norris will make his Orioles debut on Thursday against the Astros. They should be familiar with him. Chris Tillman is being pushed back to Friday against the Mariners - his former organization - at Camden Yards followed by Scott Feldman on Saturday and Wei-Yin Chen on Sunday. Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette met with reporters in the back of the press box

Hammel on injury

Orioles pitcher Jason Hammel met with reporters in the home dugout during batting practice. Here's a sampling: "It started in spring training. I've been dealing with it all year," he said. "It's not really a pain thing. It's more of an uncomfortable thing. Hopefully tomorrow, the MRI will tell me something. When something doesn't hurt, it's confusing. When you feel all right to a certain

Pearce batting ninth

Steve Pearce is in the new Orioles lineup, batting ninth and serving as the designated hitter. Adam Jones is in center field and Nate McLouth is in left. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Chris Davis 1B Matt Wieters C J.J. Hardy SS Brian Roberts 2B Steve Pearce DH Miguel Gonzalez RHP For the Astros Jonathan

Showalter on Hammel

Orioles pitcher Jason Hammel hasn't won since May 27. It's going to be a while before he can make another attempt to end the streak. Hammel was placed on the disabled list, retroactive to July 29, with a right flexor mass strain. In 21 starts for the Orioles, Hammel is 7-8 with a 5.20 ERA over 123 innings. "He's eligible on the 13th (of August),

Hammel going on disabled list (updated)

The news is coming in waves at Camden Yards. The Orioles acquired pitcher Bud Norris and International Signing Bonus Slot No. 91 from the Astros this afternoon for outfielder LJ Hoes and minor league left-hander Josh Hader - both local products - and the 2014 Draft Competitive Balance Pick-Round A, Selection No 2. That's not all. Jason Hammel is being placed on the 15-day disabled

Orioles acquire pitcher Bud Norris from Astros (updated)

The Orioles have acquired right-hander Bud Norris from the Astros ahead of the 4 p.m. non-waiver trading deadline. To get the veteran starter, they had to part with outfielder LJ Hoes and minor league pitcher Josh Hader, a left-hander who was a 19th-round draft pick in 2012. In the trade, consummated at about 3:30 p.m., that the Orioles also sent the Astros the second selection

Jones the DH, McLouth in center field

Orioles manager Buck Showalter is providing a little rest for Adam Jones, making him the designated hitter tonight against the Astros at Camden Yards. Jones will be serving as the DH for the fifth time this season. Nate McLouth is starting in center field tonight. LJ Hoes is back in left field. For the Astros Jonathan Villar SS Jose Altuve 2B Jason Castro C Chris

Oberholtzer starting against Orioles

The Orioles will face a left-hander tonight. It just won't be Erik Bedard. The Astros have scratched Bedard and will give the ball to rookie Brett Oberholtzer, according to MLB.com's Brian McTaggart. McTaggart adds that Bedard hasn't been traded, though he's on the block. And I should emphasis that I mean the trading block. We are, after all, in Baltimore. Oberholtzer, 24, has allowed six

As the deadline approaches ...

I'm getting ready to make the drive to Camden Yards, which should ensure that news breaks while I'm behind the wheel. The only question is whether it happens while I'm on Rt. 32, 70, 695 or 95. Take your pick. As far as we know, left-hander Erik Bedard remains the scheduled starter tonight for the Astros, but Bud Norris will take his place if the

What should the Orioles do with Schoop?

Jonathan Schoop hit a home run last night for Triple-A Norfolk. Schoop had three hits on Monday, including a home run. This Schoop kid is pretty good. Just ask any team that's trying to work a trade with the Orioles. Up to this point, the Orioles have been reluctant to part with him, whether it's for Joe Blanton or Bud Norris or another available arm

Showalter speaks after 4-3 win

Orioles manager Buck Showalter never second-guessed his decision tonight to send Wei-Yin Chen back to the mound in the top of the eighth inning, and to leave the left-hander out there with the tying run on base. Chen struck out Jason Castro, and Darren O'Day retired the next two batters to preserve a one-run lead. "There were a lot of key outs. It was a

Showalter stays with Chen (O's win 4-3)

Just as he did in Kansas City, Orioles manager Buck Showalter allowed left-hander Wei-Yin Chen to return for the eighth inning tonight at Camden Yards. Just as he did in Kansas City, Showalter allowed Chen to face a left-handed hitter with the tying run on base. The second-guessers where sharpening their knives, or at least their tongues, but Chen didn't repeat his mistake in Kansas

Orioles continuing attempts to acquire Norris or Vargas (Davis homers)

Though they could shift in many directions, the Orioles seem to be focused primarily on acquiring starters Bud Norris or Jason Vargas, according to an industry source. The Astros will have to significantly lower their asking price, according to sources. But the Orioles remain interested because Norris, 28, is making only $3 million this season and is under team control through 2015. And he's posted

Flaherty on first (O's down 3-0)

Ryan Flaherty is making his first major league start at first base tonight. He's appeared in seven innings over four games at first since the Orioles selected him in the Rule 5 draft in the winter of 2011. Flaherty has been fielding ground balls at first, anticipating that he might be needed. He headed out to the field early today and practiced taking throws in

More notes before tonight's Orioles-Astros game

Orioles manager Buck Showalter met in his office with executive vice president Dan Duquette before his pregame session with the media. Duquette briefed him on the latest trade talks, which haven't yielded another addition since the Orioles acquired reliever Francisco Rodriguez from the Brewers for minor league infielder Nicky Delmonico. It's still not a topic of conversation in the Orioles' clubhouse. "I think guys know,

Machado hit during BP (will stay in lineup)

Orioles third baseman Manny Machado was hit by a ground ball today that took a bad hop during batting practice. He walked off the field and is being checked by the club's training staff. Reporters had just finished talking to former Orioles manager Dave Trembley, now the Astros third base coach, in front of the visiting dugout when Machado was struck. Adam Jones was in

Flaherty starting at first base (Astros lineup added)

Ryan Flaherty is making a rare start for the Orioles tonight, replacing Chris Davis at first base in the series opener against the Astros at Camden Yards. Davis will serve as the designated hitter instead of Henry Urrutia. Flaherty hasn't started since July 5. He's had three at-bats since that date, the last coming on July 13. His last appearance came nine days later. Flaherty

Astros scratch Norris from tonight's start at Camden Yards

The Orioles no longer will be facing Astros right-hander Bud Norris tonight in the opener of a three-game series at Camden Yards. The Astros just announced that Lucas Harrell will replace Norris tonight. No explanation was provided, but Norris has been the subject of intense trade speculation as the non-waiver deadline approaches Wednesday afternoon. The Orioles have inquired about Norris, but the Astros reportedly are

Gausman: "I'm still learning how to pitch" (Pineiro released)

In desperate need of a break from all the non-waiver trade deadline chatter, speculation and conflicting reports, I set up a phone interview with pitcher Kevin Gausman, who is scheduled to make his next start Friday for Triple-A Norfolk. Gausman has made two starts for the Tides since being optioned, allowing six runs and 11 hits in 7 2/3 innings. He had been working in

Duquette on the trade deadline (updated)

With less than 48 hours remaining before the non-waiver trade deadline, executive vice president Dan Duquette said the Orioles are "still looking around to see if we can add a piece here or there to help the team." The Orioles are still looking at "hitting and pitching options," Duquette said. "We're looking at both." Not much has changed since last year's non-waiver deadline. Duquette still

Dickerson outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk

So much for trading Chris Dickerson. The Orioles were unable to swing a deal involving the outfielder, and he will stay in the organization after clearing waivers and being outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk. Dickerson, 31, batted .245/.274/.412 with five doubles, four home runs and 13 RBIs in 46 games. The Orioles designated him for assignment to make room for Henry Urrutia on the 25- and

Showalter on the trade talk

I jokingly asked a team official yesterday whether it was safe for me to go out after the game, or if I should be prepared to write a trade story. He texted back, "Enjoy your night." I made the bold assumption that Jake Peavy wasn't being traded to the Orioles. Or Bud Norris. Or Michael Young. Or Raul Ibanez. Or Carlos Quentin. Or Justin Morneau.

Showalter speaks after 5-0 loss

The Orioles suffered their fourth shutout loss of the season today and their first since June 8 at Tropicana Field. The Red Sox hadn't blanked the Orioles at Camden Yards since winning 4-0 on July 20, 2011. Manager Buck Showalter focused more on the offense today than starting pitcher Jason Hammel, who allowed three runs and walked a season-high five batters in 5 1/3 innings

Machado and Davis in dueling slumps (O's lose 5-0)

Manny Machado's average has dipped below .300 for the first time since April 27 after going hitless in his first three at-bats today. It's down to .298 after he lined to Boston shortstop Stephen Drew to strand two runners in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Orioles' third baseman is 3-for-27 in his last seven games, though he's homered twice, and 9-for-57 in his

Game update and more notes (O's down 3-0)

Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz heard lots of boos as he stepped to the plate in the top of the first inning today, defenders of phones everywhere still taking umbrage with the damage he inflicted in the visiting dugout last night. They must have been disconnected, or he completely ignored them. Ortiz singled up the middle with two outs to keep a rally

Showalter on the Hoes/Asencio roster move

LJ Hoes was chosen as the Orioles' extra position player over other candidates at Triple-a Norfolk this weekend because, as manager Buck Showalter put it, "Like always, he was our best option as a right-handed hitting outfielder. Or really, period." In other words, the position really didn't matter. Hoes, 23, was most deserving of the call-up. Hoes, a third-round pick in the 2008 First-Year Player

LJ Hoes starting in left field (Asencio designated for assignment)

Not only is LJ Hoes in the Orioles clubhouse today, he's starting left field against the Red Sox in the series finale at Camden Yards. This will be Hoes' first major league start. He had one at-bat with the Orioles last season. It's an unusual lineup today, with Chris Davis batting third, Matt Wieters fifth as the DH and Brian Roberts seventh. And, of course,

Hammel continues search for elusive win

Jason Hammel will attempt today to capture his first win since May 27, a span of nine starts. Hammel has five losses and four no-decisions since his last victory. He's allowed 20 hits combined in his last two outings, though he was credited with a quality start Tuesday after surrendering three runs in six innings in Kansas City. That's "quality" by definition. Hammel gave up

Showalter speaks after 7-3 loss

Orioles manager Buck Showalter didn't confirm a roster move following tonight's 7-3 loss to the Red Sox, saying only that it's being "contemplated." Showalter said he would check the weather on Sunday, indicating that no announcement will come tonight. We'll see. LJ Hoes is in Baltimore and is expected to be officially recalled at some point. As for tonight's game, starter Scott Feldman took the

Orioles interested in Michael Young, O's lose 7-3

Not ready to close shop after acquiring a starting pitcher and reliever this month, the Orioles continue to check on available hitters and have talked to the Phillies about Michael Young, according to an industry source. Young could serve as a right-handed designated hitter and a backup at the corner infield positions. Young, 36, is batting .278/.344/.404 with 18 doubles, three triples, seven homers and

Game update and more notes (O's down 4-0)

The start of tonight's game at Camden Yards was delayed 32 minutes because of rain. Once it began, Scott Feldman retired the Red Sox in order on three ground balls and 19 pitches. Adam Jones flew to center field with two outs in the bottom of the first to strand Nick Markakis, who drew a walk against Boston starter Ryan Dempster. Why do I mention

Hardy trying to reverse trend against Dempster

Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy didn't need the numbers recited to him as he stood at his locker this afternoon. He's fully aware that Red Sox starter Ryan Dempster has dominated him over the years. To say it's one-sided would be much too kind. Hardy is 2-for-30 lifetime against Dempster, who takes the mound tonight for the second game of their series at Camden Yards. He

Orioles prepared to recall LJ Hoes

The Orioles have made arrangements to bring Triple-A Norfolk outfielder LJ Hoes to Baltimore, and he could be officially recalled before Sunday's game against the Red Sox at Camden Yards. Hoes isn't with the Tides, who are playing tonight in Rochester. The Orioles are waiting to find out whether they need to continue carrying an extra reliever before announcing the move. Official word could come

Red Sox-Orioles lineups for Saturday

Boston's Ryan Dempster faces Scott Feldman of the Orioles in today's middle game of this three-game weekend series. Here are the lineups for today's game: For the Red Sox: Jacoby Ellsbury CF Shane Victorino RF Dustin Pedroia 2B David Ortiz DH Mike Napoli 1B Mike Carp LF Jarrod Saltalamacchia C Stephen Drew SS Jose Iglesias 3B Ryan Dempster RHP For the Orioles: Nate McLouth LF

Showalter on Davis: "Chris will be a productive hitter for us again"

Chris Davis took a called third strike in the eighth inning last night and looked like a man whose head was about to explode. He clearly was no fan of plate umpire Laz Diaz's magical mystery strike zone. Davis sat in the dugout and fumed, his eyes attempting to burn a hole through Diaz and anyone in his path. Then, he stood up and walked

Showalter speaks after 6-0 win

According to Elias, Chris Tillman is the first Orioles pitcher to be 10-plus games above .500 at any point since Mike Mussina in 1999. Tillman improved to 13-3 tonight by shutting out the Red Sox on two hits over seven innings in a 6-0 win. Tillman struck out eight batters, tying his season high, and retired 19 of the last 21. Manager Buck Showalter didn't

Jones with a multi-homer game (Tillman outstanding in 6-0 win)

Once again, Adam Jones has directed a 92 mph fastball from Boston starter John Lackey over the out-of-town scoreboard in right field. Jones' second homer tonight increased the Orioles' lead to 4-0 in the bottom of the fifth inning. Before tonight, Jones was 7-for-32 (.219) with no home runs against Lackey. Jones has 22 homers this season. Anyone remember the last one that went to

Tillman escapes jam, Jones hits home run (updated)

Since July 4, 2012, Chris Tillman's 21 wins are tied with the Cardinals' Adam Wainright for the second-most in the majors behind the Tigers' Max Scherzer (23). Tillman is attempting tonight to become the Orioles' first 13-game winner since Erik Bedard in 2007. The last Orioles starter to pick up his 12th win on or before July 21, as Tillman did, was Sidney Ponson on

Notes before tonight's Orioles-Red Sox game

The Orioles have won 14 of their last 19 games against the Red Sox, and 24 of their last 34. Infielder Jonathan Schoop has been activated from the minor league disabled list and rejoined Triple-A Norfolk for tonight's game at Rochester. He homered twice and drove in seven runs last night at short-season Single-A Aberdeen. To make room for Schoop, the Orioles released infielder Brandon

Orioles using familiar lineup against Red Sox

Though the offense scuffled over the last three games in Kansas City, Orioles manager Buck Showalter didn't make any drastic changes or do any tweaking with his lineup for tonight's series opener against the Red Sox at Camden Yards. Chris Davis continues to bat fifth while searching for his first home run since the All-Star break. Matt Wieters is hitting sixth, J.J. Hardy seventh, Henry

Pearce plays in first rehab game, Red Sox lineup

Orioles outfielder Steve Pearce started his injury-rehab assignment today with the Gulf Coast Orioles. Pearce, leading off and playing left field, went 2-for-4 with an RBI. He also committed a fielding error. Pearce hasn't played since June 19 in Detroit. He was batting .235/.311/.383 with three doubles, three homers and nine RBIs in 28 games before going on the disabled list with left wrist tendinitis.

What's the next move for the offense?

The Orioles haven't been home since July 14. They probably would have gone anywhere to escape Kansas City, where they lost three straight games to close out their road trip. They were outscored 14-6 in those defeats and batted .214. They were 1-for-17 with runners in scoring position, placing the focus back on their offense. Maybe it's an overreaction. They scored 23 runs in the

Gonzalez lacking quality in his start (O's lose 7-1)

It's one of those nights for the Orioles. One of those nights that indicates that a split of their four-game series in Kansas City isn't in the cards. Not unless there's dramatic shift. Not unless someone changes the deck. The Orioles rotation had posted seven straight quality starts and 10 in their last 11 games, but Miguel Gonzalez left tonight's game after 4 2/3 innings.

Game update and rotation change for Red Sox (O's down 3-1)

Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez retired the first two Royals he faced in the first inning tonight and gave up a cheap double to Billy Butler. I say "cheap" because Butler slapped at the ball and sent it bouncing down the right field line. Looked pretty harmless leaving his bat. Turned out to be quite harmful. The next two batters delivered RBI singles - Salvador Perez

Orioles and Royals lineups (Phils not near deal for Dickerson)

No surprises in the Orioles lineup tonight as they attempt to gain a split of their four-game series in Kansas City. Henry Urrutia remains the designated hitter against a right-handed starter, in this case former Oriole Jeremy Guthrie. Brian Roberts continues to play second base and bat ninth. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Chris Davis

Pitching matchups vs. Red Sox and notes on Wieters and Gonzalez

The Orioles will face two right-handers in their three-game series against the Boston Red Sox that begins Friday night at Camden Yards. Does Henry Urrutia get the start at designated hitter in all three games? Stay tuned. Here are the matchups: Friday: Chris Tillman (12-3, 3.84 ERA) vs. Ryan Dempster (5-8, 4.28 ERA) Saturday: Scott Feldman (2-1, 4.73 ERA) vs. Brandon Workman (0-1, 4.40 ERA)

Updates on Clevenger, Wada and Hoes

Catcher Steve Clevenger, the Baltimore native acquired from the Cubs with Scott Feldman for pitchers Jake Arrieta and Pedro Strop, played in his first game today since recovering from a strained oblique. Clevenger was behind the plate for the Gulf Coast League Orioles and went 0-for-3 with a strikeout before being replaced. He had been rehabbing at the Ed Smith Stadium complex in Sarasota. Clevenger

A little of this, a little of that

According to various reports, the Orioles are still scouting starting pitchers and have been keeping close tabs on the Houston Astros. Not a big surprise, since executive vice president Dan Duquette is always in the market for pitching. He goes to an actual market and has "left-hander" listed after "bananas" and "milk." If he succeeds in bringing in another starter, it would have to be

Orioles suffer another one-run loss

The Orioles gave up three runs in the last two innings tonight and lost to the Royals 4-3. They need a win Thursday night to salvage a split of the four-game series. David Lough singled off Orioles right-hander Darren O'Day with one out in the bottom of the ninth, the ball ricocheting off the reliever and second base, and Alcides Escobar followed with a double

Wieters gives Orioles lead, Chen gives up first HR in first inning (game tied)

Catcher Matt Wieters is back in the Orioles lineup tonight after resting on Tuesday. And his hot streak continues. Wieters just belted a two-run homer in the top of the fourth inning to give the Orioles a 2-1 lead over the Royals. Wieters is now 10-for-23 with two doubles, two homers, four RBIs and six runs scored in his last six games. The first inning

Orioles announce Alvarez signing

Cuban outfielder Dariel Alvarez has passed his physical and officially signed with the Orioles. Alvarez, 24, will be assigned to Single-A Frederick after reporting this week to the Ed Smith Stadium complex in Sarasota. Alvarez, who signed for $800,000, played for Camaguey in the Cuban League from 2007-11 and Tuxpan in Mexico in 2012. In five seasons with Camaguey, he batted .297 (341-for-1,147) with 37

Orioles option Valencia

The Orioles are adding a reliever for tonight's game in Kansas City and subtracting a bench player. To make room for right-hander Francisco Rodriguez on the 25-man roster, the Orioles have chosen to option corner infielder/designated hitter Danny Valencia to Triple-A Norfolk, according to a team official. The move leaves the Orioles with a three-man bench and eight-man bullpen. Valencia is 0-for-22 since June 17.

Orioles and Royals lineups

As expected, Henry Urrutia is serving as the Orioles designated hitter for tonight's game in Kansas City. Still waiting for an announcement on the corresponding roster move for reliever Francisco Rodriguez. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Chris Davis 1B Matt Wieters C J.J. Hardy SS Henry Urrutia DH Brian Roberts 2B Wei-Yin Chen LHP For

It's Chen vs. Santana tonight

Orioles left-hander Wei-Yin Chen is seeking his third consecutive win tonight since coming off the disabled list. He also could intensify the debate over which Orioles starter qualifies as the ace. Is it Chen, Chris Tillman or Miguel Gonzalez? Chen has allowed two runs and 11 hits in his last two starts covering 13 1/3 innings - both against the Rangers. He's posted seven quality

Taking another look at the Rodriguez/Delmonico trade

The Orioles will add newly acquired Francisco Rodriguez to their bullpen for tonight's game in Kansas City, subtracting reliever Jairo Asencio or a bench player. Sending down Asencio would be the logical move, but MASN's Gary Thorne suggested multiple times during last night's broadcast that infielder Danny Valencia is more likely to be optioned. Nothing against Asencio, but I think most of us would agree

Hammel keeps struggling and escaping (O's lose 3-2)

I don't know whether to criticize Jason Hammel for allowing a run in each of the first three innings or praise him for minimizing the damage. Admonish him for the nine baserunners or admire his escape routine. I'll choose all of the above. Hammel has allowed three runs and eight hits in three innings, with one walk and two strikeouts. He's thrown 54 pitches, 33

Orioles finally fall behind (Machado homers)

Before tonight, the Orioles hadn't trailed in 36 innings since the All-Star break and hadn't fallen behind in the last 45 innings overall. Their last deficit came at the end of the July 13 loss to Toronto. All good things must come to an end. The Royals loaded the bases with no outs against starter Jason Hammel, and Alex Gordon scored on Billy Butler's double

Orioles acquire reliever Francisco Rodriguez from Brewers

Once the Orioles traded for starter Scott Feldman, their focus shifted to acquiring a veteran reliever, which they did tonight. The Orioles announced that they obtained right-hander Francisco Rodriguez from the Milwaukee Brewers for minor league infielder Nicky Delmonico. Rodriguez will join the team Wednesday in Kansas City, at which point they will make a corresponding move to clear space on the 25-man roster. Jairo

Valencia and Teagarden in Orioles' lineup

Orioles manager Buck Showalter chose Danny Valencia over Henry Urrutia as his designated hitter for tonight's game against the Royals. Urrutia had three hits last night, but Valencia is 11-for-20 with seven RBIs lifetime against Royals left-hander Bruce Chen. Taylor Teagarden is behind the plate tonight. Matt Wieters will sit despite being 9-for-21 with two doubles, a home run, two RBIs, two walks and five

More on Reimold's surgery

Orioles outfielder Nolan Reimold is resting comfortably, or as much as humanly possible while propped up in bed and wearing a neck brace, following corrective surgery this morning to fuse two vertebrae at the Florida Spine Institute in Clearwater, Fla. Reimold isn't permitted to talk, but he provided information in a text message that was passed along to me this afternoon. The pseudarthrosis, or false

Quick updates on Dickerson, Alvarez and Reimold (updated)

A few teams have expressed interest in outfielder Chris Dickerson and the Orioles are continuing attempts to trade him, according to a club official. Dickerson was designated for assignment on Friday to make room for outfielder Henry Urrutia on the 25- and 40-man rosters. The Orioles have until the weekend to trade Dickerson or get him through waivers. He figures to be claimed if multiple

Big start for Hammel?

Jason Hammel is making his 20th start for the Orioles tonight, matching his total for the entire 2012 season. That's where the similarities end. Hammel hasn't won since May 27, a span of eight starts. His ERA is up to 5.24. In his last outing, he allowed six runs and 10 hits in six innings against the Blue Jays. Manager Buck Showalter moved Scott Feldman

Urrutia having a career night (O's win 9-2)

I understand that it's a short major league career for Henry Urrutia, but his second start has been second to none. Urrutia is 3-for-3 tonight, with all of his singles going to left field. He's 4-for-8 in three games since the Orioles selected his contract from Triple-A Norfolk. My math skills are poor, but that's a .500 average. His baserunning needs work, as advertised, but

Wieters, gloves and Urrutia (updated)

The Orioles jumped on Royals starter Wade Davis for two runs in the top of the first inning, as they continue to take early leads and take advantage of their opponents' shoddy defense. Nate McLouth drew a leadoff walk and scored on an error by Kansas City third baseman Mike Moustakas, making me wonder whether the Royals watched video of the Rangers series. Nick Markakis

Urrutia back in the lineup

With a right-hander opposing the Orioles tonight, Henry Urrutia has returned to the lineup as the designated hitter in his second major league start. Urrutia is batting eighth, as he did in Saturday's debut. He's 1-for-5 with an RBI in two games. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Chris Davis 1B Matt Wieters C J.J. Hardy

Cuban outfielder Dariel Alvarez takes his physical

Outfielder Dariel Alvarez, who defected from Cuba last summer, took his physical today in Baltimore after agreeing to terms with the Orioles last week. The Orioles haven't announced Alvarez's signing, but he told MLB.com that he would receive an $800,000 bonus. The Orioles signed another Cuban outfielder, Henry Urrutia, for $778,500 after he finally arrived in the U.S. in late February. Urrutia agreed to terms

Cleaning out my notebook

The Orioles begin a four-game series tonight in Kansas City, where Scott Feldman is 3-1 with a 2.72 ERA in 10 career appearances, including five starts. Manager Buck Showalter moved Feldman ahead of Jason Hammel in the rotation following the All-Star break. Alex Gordon is 6-for-15 with a double and triple against Feldman. Billy Butler is 5-for-24 with a home run. J.J. Hardy is 8-for-22

Tillman, gloves and Valencia (O's win 4-2, complete three-game sweep)

Orioles right-hander Chris Tillman understands how the West was won. Tillman began tonight with a career 10-1 record and 2.03 ERA in 12 starts against the American League West, and he's leading 4-1 as the game moves to the bottom of the seventh inning. Tillman is trying to produce the Orioles' seventh quality start in the last eight games. He hasn't dominated tonight, but he's

Roberts, gloves and Tillman (updated)

Does Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts look more comfortable at the plate these days? Roberts is 2-for-2 with an RBI and a run scored tonight, and 4-for-6 with a double, three RBIs and two runs scored in the last two games. Roberts is 6-for-14 in his last five games. He's collected hits in six of the last nine, raising his average to .266. Ryan Flaherty

McLouth, gloves and Gausman (and more Wieters)

Nate McLouth is leading off tonight against a left-hander, the Rangers' Martin Perez, rather than moving down the order and surrendering the top spot to Nick Markakis. Manager Buck Showalter could be playing a hunch - or the hot hand. McLouth led off with a single tonight, making him 6-for-14 in his last four games. He has a double, triple, RBI and three runs scored

Davis in tonight's lineup, Urrutia is not (with Rangers lineup)

Chris Davis remains at first base for the Orioles tonight after fouling a ball off his right ankle last night and playing in obvious pain. Henry Urrutia is on the bench against Rangers left-hander Martin Perez, with Danny Valencia serving as the designated hitter. Since June 25, 2012, Chris Tillman is 20-6 and has the second-highest winning percentage (.769) among American League starters, trailing only

Does Urrutia start again tonight against a southpaw?

The Orioles are playing a rare Sunday night game, which gives manager Buck Showalter more time to craft his lineup. He's probably got a few already made out. That's the norm with Showalter. The Rangers are sending another southpaw to the mound: Martin Perez, who gave up two earned runs (four total) in six innings July 9 at Camden Yards. Left-handers are batting .286 against

Urrutia with first major league hit and RBI (O's win 7-4)

Two trips to the plate, two bases-loaded situations. Henry Urrutia's first major league game tonight has been anything but dull. Urrutia lined a single off Rangers left-hander Joseph Ortiz with no outs in the top of the third inning for his first major league hit and RBI, increasing the Orioles' lead to 5-0. Ortiz, who replaced starter Ross Wolf, threw two straight sliders. Urrutia fouled

McLouth with a steal, Urrutia with a strikeout (Jones homers, Davis hurting)

Orioles left fielder Nate McLouth singled and stole second base tonight. It might not seem like a big deal, but it's noteworthy. McLouth hadn't swiped a base since June 19. He attempted only one since that night, getting thrown out in a June 22 game against Toronto. Pitchers have been quicker to the plate with McLouth on first base, and he's been extremely patient. McLouth

Urrutia batting eighth as the DH tonight (with Rangers lineup, start delayed)

Cuban defector Henry Urrutia, who had his contract selected from Triple-A Norfolk on Friday, will make his major league debut tonight as the Orioles' designated hitter. Urrutia is batting eighth against Rangers right-hander Ross Wolf, the former Orioles farmhand. J.J. Hardy will bat ahead of Urrutia, and Brian Roberts will bat behind him. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF

Steve Johnson update and more

Pitching for the first time since going on the disabled list with a strained left oblique, Orioles right-hander Steve Johnson threw two scoreless innings this morning with the Gulf Coast League team in Sarasota. Johnson didn't allow a hit, walked one batter and struck out three. The plan calls for Johnson to continue his rehab with short-season Single-A Aberdeen, where he's expected to report on

A few thoughts on Urrutia and Reimold

The only drama following the news that Henry Urrutia would be joining the Orioles in Arlington was whether he would start against one of the Rangers' left-handers. It didn't happen last night and it may not happen Sunday, but Urrutia was a slam dunk to start tonight against right-hander Ross Wolf, the former Orioles farmhand. The Orioles didn't bring up Urrutia so he could sit

Chen still stingy with the runs (O's win 3-1)

Orioles left-hander Wei-Yin Chen has made two starts since coming off the disabled list, both of them against the Texas Rangers. He's allowed two runs and 11 hits in 13 1/3 innings. In three career starts against the Rangers - tonight was the first in Arlington - Chen has surrendered only three earns runs in 21 innings. Tonight was a bit of a struggle, but

Wieters homers, Davis struggles vs. former team (O's lead 3-1)

Matt Wieters has two career hits against Rangers left-hander Derek Holland. Both of them are home runs. Wieters took Holland deep in the top of the second inning tonight to give the Orioles a 1-0 lead in Arlington. Maybe those four days off freshened up Wieters. Wieters has hit five of his home runs against left-handers this season and eight against right-handers. Chris Davis struck

Urrutia on bench tonight (and Reimold update)

Henry Urrutia won't make his first major league start tonight. Urrutia is on the Orioles' bench against Rangers left-hander Derek Holland. Danny Valencia is the designated hitter. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Chris Davis 1B J.J. Hardy SS Matt Wieters C Danny Valencia DH Brian Roberts 2B Wei-Yin Chen LHP For the Rangers Ian Kinsler

Reimold placed on DL and headed to surgery, Urrutia and Valencia added, Dickerson DFA

Orioles outfielder Nolan Reimold has been placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 14, with nerve inflammation in his cervical spine, and he is scheduled to undergo surgery next week. The Orioles recalled infielder Danny Valencia and selected the contract of outfielder Henry Urrutia. They designated outfielder Chris Dickerson for assignment to clear room for Urrutia on the 25- and 40-man rosters. Reimold,

Rotation update

The Orioles are listing Scott Feldman, Jason Hammel, Wei-Yin Chen and Miguel Gonzalez as their four starters for the series in Kansas City that begins Monday night. Manager Buck Showalter is keeping the same five starters after the All-Star break, but he's tweaked the order by moving Feldman ahead of Hammel. Hammel pitched Saturday against the Blue Jays at Camden Yards. and allowed six runs

A quick look back at the first half

I'm curious whether the Orioles will toss Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia into the deep end of the major league pool or let him dip his toe into it. Urrutia has climbed up the minor league ladder. Maybe he'll climb down the one leading into the pool, if you know what I mean. The Orioles are facing a left-hander tonight, the Rangers' Derek Holland, which could

Taking another look at Betemit's injury and slow recovery

The news that Cuban defector Henry Urrutia was joining the Orioles in Texas this weekend came as little surprise for three reasons. He's putting up numbers deserving of a promotion, executive vice president Dan Duquette and manager Buck Showalter hinted at it during the last homestand, and Wilson Betemit is a long way from serving as the Orioles' left-handed designated hitter. The Orioles haven't given

Urrutia also joining Orioles in Texas (and note on Dariel Alvarez)

Make that two roster moves for the Orioles this weekend. According to sources, Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia will meet the Orioles in Texas on Friday and be placed on the 24-hour taxi squad. He most likely will have his contract selected from Triple-A Norfolk after working out with the team. Urrutia is batting a combined .365/.427/.531 with 20 doubles, one triple, seven home runs and

Valencia joining team in Texas

The Orioles are expected to make at least one roster move before resuming their season Friday night in Texas Danny Valencia no longer is with Triple-A Norfolk. I've heard that he's headed to Texas and will officially be recalled before the game. Valencia is batting .230/.277/.508 with five doubles, four homers and eight RBIs in 21 games with the Orioles this season. He's posted a

Jurrjens elects free agency

Pitcher Jair Jurrjens cleared waivers today and was outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk. However, he refused the assignment and elected to become a free agent. The Orioles designated Jurrjens for assignment on Friday to make room for reliever Jairo Asencio on the 40-man roster. They were unable to trade him and couldn't get him back in Norfolk's rotation. Jurrjens, 27, has posted a 4.91 ERA in

What should the Orioles do with McLouth? (with Jurrjens note)

The Orioles didn't re-sign outfielder Nate McLouth until the winter meetings, reaching agreement on a one-year, $2 million contract. What approach should they take with him following the 2013 season? Should they wait that long? I spoke with someone in the organization recently who thinks the front office should begin extension talks with McLouth's representative. Don't let him test the market again. Does that idea

More from Ripken and Showalter on Hardy (and 2014 draft note)

As I sifted through my notes and old quotes from the season's first half, I found manager Buck Showalter's recent comments on shortstop J.J. Hardy. I've been talking about Hardy a lot lately because I'm frequently asked whether the Orioles should move Manny Machado to shortstop. I tend to agree with Cal Ripken Jr., who sees no reason to mess with the left side of

Another this, that and the other

Did Yankees closer Mariano Rivera receive the Most Valuable Player or Lifetime Achievement Award at last night's All-Star Game? Either way, I'm fine with it. There wasn't a clear-cut choice for MVP, though you could argue for Chris Sale or, yes, Adam Jones. Jones doubled and scored a run, which was plenty in a 3-0 win. Then again, he also struck out twice. Rivera was

World, meet Manny Machado (AL wins 3-0)

No matter what else happens in the All-Star Game, Orioles third baseman Manny Machado will be a prime topic of conversation after turning in the most outstanding defensive play of the night. An absolute dazzler. Machado backed up to the edge of the outfield grass to backhand a two-hopper from Arizona's Paul Goldschmidt along the line, the ball almost hitting him in the chest, and

First time through the All-Star order (Davis out, Machado in)

The Orioles are 0-for-3 so far tonight in the 84th All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York. First baseman Chris Davis flew to center field on an 0-2 pitch from National League starter Matt Harvey with two on and one out in the first inning. Harvey threw Davis 98 and 99 mph four-seamers before retiring him on an 89 mph fastball. Adam Jones struck

A few first-half awards (Hobgood moves up)

With the All-Star Game being played tonight at Citi Field in New York, it seems like the right time to hand out some first-half awards for the Orioles. We're actually more than halfway through the season, but we're at the break. That's close enough. Most Valuable Oriole Only in 2013 could Manny Machado finish as the runner-up for this honor. Chris Davis is hitting .315/.392/.717

Davis hits eight home runs in first round (Davis tears callous on hand)

Orioles first baseman Chris Davis hit eight home runs in the first round of the Home Run Derby tonight at Citi Field, putting him in second place behind Oakland's Yoenis Cespedes, who belted 17 and mixed in plenty of tape-measure shots. The top four advance. There are three more hitters coming up. Michael Cuddyer hit seven, Pedro Alvarez six and Prince Fielder five. The Nationals'

Davis batting cleanup in All-Star Game

Orioles first baseman Chris Davis, baseball's leader in home runs with 37, will bat cleanup for the American League in Tuesday night's All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York. Davis, who's also second in RBIs with 93, is wedged between Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera and Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista. Orioles center fielder Adam Jones is batting seventh and shortstop J.J. Hardy is

Ripken on Machado: "He's carving out how to play 3B and playing it unbelievably well"

So how good is Manny Machado at third base? I decided to ask a 19-time All-Star and two-time Most Valuable Player who moved from shortstop to third base in the minors, and from the hot corner to shortstop and back again in the majors. "He's carving out how to play third base," said Cal Ripken Jr., "and he's playing it unbelievably well." If that's how

Brooks Robinson on Manny Machado: "He's as good as anybody playing over there"

So how good is Manny Machado at third base? I decided to ask someone who owns 16 Gold Gloves at the position. "He's as good as anybody playing over there," said Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson. If that's how No. 5 feels, that's good enough for me. "I see some of the games and read the papers and have watched the plays that he's made

Showalter speaks after 7-4 win

Orioles manager Buck Showalter found out on Friday that pitcher Chris Tillman might be named as a replacement for Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander in the All-Star Game. It depended whether Verlander made his start today. "Proud of Chris Tillman today," Showalter said after the Orioles' 7-4 win over the Blue Jays that completed the first half. "Got to give him the golf clap in the

Jones also homers today (Feldman update, O's win 7-4)

Adam Jones has homered in three consecutive games, which is almost enough to impress Chris Davis, who has done it in four straight. Jones is just trying to keep up. Jones drove a pitch from Blue Jays starter Josh Johnson over the fence in center field in the fifth inning to increase the Orioles' lead to 7-2. He has 19 homers and 67 RBIs this

Tillman chosen to All-Star team (Davis homers again, Feldman update)

The Orioles now have five representatives for Tuesday night's All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York. Chris Tillman has been named as a replacement for Justin Verlander, who's starting today for the Tigers. Tillman, who hasn't pitched since Friday night, will join center fielder Adam Jones, first baseman Chris Davis, shortstop J.J. Hardy and third baseman Manny Machado. This is the first All-Star selection

Updating the rotation

Orioles manager Buck Showalter isn't ready to confirm the order of his rotation for the start of the second half. However, he indicated that it may not undergo any changes. Showalter is waiting to find out how the bullpen is used today. He's got a few starters available to pitch in relief if needed. Wei-Yin Chen, Miguel Gonzalez and Chris Tillman would start the three

Dickerson's the DH

Chris Dickerson will serve as the Orioles' designated hitter today, his first start since July 7 in New York. He's been sidelined with a strained left shoulder. Dickerson is 6-for-10 lifetime against Blue Jays right-hander Josh Johnson. Matt Wieters is behind the plate again today. He can rest during the break. For the Orioles Nate McLouth LF Manny Machado 3B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones

Reimold slow to heat up after return from disabled list

Chris Dickerson continues to take batting practice, and he did some throwing yesterday as the final test on his left shoulder. Assuming that he passed, it might be a good idea to put him in today's lineup for the series finale against the Blue Jays that wraps up the season's first half. Dickerson is 6-for-10 lifetime against Toronto right-hander Josh Johnson, which is one reason.

Showalter on Hammel: "I think his best games are ahead of him"

Orioles pitcher Jason Hammel called his start today "unacceptable" and challenged himself to get better. His manager was much kinder. Hammel was charged with six runs and 10 hits in six-plus innings in the Orioles' 7-3 loss to the Blue Jays at sold-out Camden Yards. "I thought there were some hard-hit balls," Showalter said. "You've got that one inning - a couple infield hits, a

Hammel can't snap winless streak (O's lose 7-3)

Jason Hammel will head into the All-Star break still searching for his first win since May 27. He's also got to be searching for some answers. Hammel's record remains above .500 - currently 7-5 as we head to the bottom of the seventh - and he's gone at least six innings in six of his last seven starts. However, he can't get that elusive victory

Hammel can't solve Encarnacion (O's lead 3-2)

The Orioles may want to walk Edwin Encarnacion. Or trade for him. Encarnacion hit his seventh home run in 12 games against the Orioles this season, and his 14th over the past two years. That's the most by any player against a single team in that span, according to ESPN Stats and Info. The Blue Jays almost hit for the cycle against Jason Hammel in

Notes before today's game

Today's game is a sellout. Tickets remain for Sunday's series finale, which also closes the first half. Yes, it's considered the first half despite the fact that Orioles are playing their 95th game today. The Orioles are only the third team in major league history to have four players with at least 105 hits at the All-Star break: Manny Machado (127), Adam Jones (114), Nick

Orioles and Blue Jays lineups

Orioles outfielder Chris Dickerson remains out of the lineup today after straining his left shoulder earlier this week, but he's going to play catch for the first time as the final test. Dickerson said he's feeling much better. He took batting practice yesterday without any setbacks. Nolan Reimold will serve as the designated hitter again today against right-hander Todd Redmond, who was in camp with

Ripken to honor Gehrig in Cooperstown

The Hall of Fame ceremonies take place later this month, and they haven't created much of a buzz in the baseball industry, considering that voters failed to elect any candidates for induction in Cooperstown, N.Y. Talk about a buzz kill. However, a dozen former players who never were formally inducted due to travel restrictions and illness will be honored in a July 28 ceremony that

Showalter speaks after 8-5 win

The Orioles' three starters in next week's All-Star Game hit home runs tonight, which seemed appropriate considering their contributions this season and the reward that awaits them. Chris Davis, Adam Jones and J.J. Hardy muscled up in the Orioles' 8-5 win over the Blue Jays at Camden Yards. "Earl would have been proud tonight," said manager Buck Showalter. "They've just been solid as people, too.

Davis passes Powell (Tillman goes six innings, O's win 8-5)

Boog Powell held the Orioles record for most RBIs before the All-Star break with 86, set during the 1969 season. He did it in 94 games. Chris Davis tied Powell's record last night and passed him tonight, upping his RBI total to 88. The Orioles are playing their 94th game. Davis drilled an opposite-field two-run homer in the second inning after Adam Jones doubled, tying

A few notes before tonight's game

It's finally stopped raining at Camden Yards and the tarp is off the field. For how long is a different matter. If tonight's game is postponed - and I'm saying if - they won't play a doubleheader on Saturday. That much is a certainty. But let's just assume that they get this one in tonight. Chris Dickerson's left shoulder feels much better today. He's going

Asencio joining bullpen, Roberts leading off (Jurrjens DFA)

The Orioles have selected the contract of reliever Jairo Asencio from Triple-A Norfolk. He's listed on the lineup sheet and will wear No. 63. Asencio isn't on the 40-man roster, so a corresponding move is pending. Asencio, 30, was 4-0 with a 2.15 ERA and 20 saves with Norfolk. The Orioles acquired him from the Brewers on March 25. As for tonight's lineup, second baseman

Orioles trade Canzler to Pirates

The Orioles have traded infielder Russ Canzler to the Pittsburgh Pirates for pitcher Tim Alderson, who will be assigned to Triple-A Norfolk. Alderson, 24, was the 22nd overall pick by the Giants in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft. He was 3-1 with a 2.79 ERA in 22 relief appearances for Triple-A Indianapolis this season, and 1-0 with a 1.32 ERA in seven games with Double-A

Quick update on roster move

The Orioles optioned right-hander Josh Stinson to Triple-A Norfolk after last night's game and noted that the corresponding roster move would be announced today. The assumption, made by myself and others, was that the club would bring up a left-hander for the long relief role. Why? Because the Orioles have three right-handers starting this weekend against the Blue Jays in the final series before the

Showalter on Machado: "He's really been tested with a lot of strike calls"

Orioles third baseman Manny Machado didn't get a hit in four at-bats last night. He also didn't get his blood pressure up due to another expanded strike zone. Machado's been ejected only once this season for arguing balls and strikes - say the magic word and win a seat in the clubhouse - but he's nearly bitten through his tongue to avoid others. The frustration

Orioles option Stinson (updated)

The Orioles couldn't make it through the night without another roster move. The club announced that it optioned pitcher Josh Stinson to Triple-A Norfolk. A corresponding move will be announced on Friday. Stinson, 25, didn't appear in a game after being recalled yesterday afternoon as the bullpen replacement for Kevin Gausman. He had one previous stint with the Orioles this season, allowing five earned runs

Dickerson update, and Showalter speaks after 3-1 win

Orioles outfielder Chris Dickerson received a cortisone injection in his left shoulder today to speed up his recovery. He took some dry swings and hopes to throw on Friday. Dickerson still isn't scheduled to undergo an MRI and remains available in a limited capacity. Manager Buck Showalter said Dickerson should be "full-go very shortly." "He's had some issues there before that were a lot more

Davis sets career highs, Gonzalez's streak and mishaps in middle (O's win 3-1)

Orioles first baseman Chris Davis must be feeling better. Or maybe he doesn't have time for the pain. Davis, still playing despite a sinus infection, snapped an 0-for-17 streak with a home run in the second inning to give the Orioles a 1-0 lead over the Rangers. Davis also had been 1-for-24 with 13 strikeouts before the at-bat. His last home run was July 6

Showalter on Urrutia: "I think he's getting closer to being an option"

The Orioles didn't make any roster moves today. Chris Dickerson avoided the disabled list. No decision has been made whether to option Wei-Yin Chen and give him a start in the minors during the break. And Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia stayed at Triple-A Norfolk. Urrutia started in left field today for the Tides and went 1-for-4 with an RBI single. He's batting .357 in 14

Updates on Dickerson, Johnson, Thames and Davis

Team orthopedist Dr. John Wilckens will examine Chris Dickerson's left shoulder later today, but the outfielder isn't expected to need an MRI on Friday. Dickerson is feeling much better and plans to swing a bat. He seems likely to avoid a trip to the disabled list. Steve Johnson (oblique) threw batting practice today in Sarasota. The session went well, which could lead to a simulated

Orioles and Rangers lineups

The Orioles were expecting to face Yu Darvish in the final game of their series against the Rangers. Instead, they get one of their former minor leaguers, Ross Wolf, after Darvish was placed on the disabled list. Only three current Orioles have faced Wolf. Chris Davis is 1-for-2 with a strikeout, Taylor Teagarden is 0-for-2 with a strikeout and Ryan Flaherty is 0-for-1. The Orioles

Wada takes giant step backward today

Just as it appeared that left-hander Tsuyoshi Wada was getting close to being a consideration for the Orioles pitching staff, he turned in a dreadful start today for Triple-A Norfolk against the Gwinnett Braves. Wada was charged with seven runs and 13 hits in five-plus innings, with one walk, three strikeouts and two home runs. He faced one batter in the sixth without recording an

How much longer before Urrutia arrives? (updated)

After a slow start, Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia is giving International League pitching the same rough treatment that he dished out in the Eastern League. Urrutia went 5-for-5 last night for Triple-A Norfolk to raise his average to .365 in 13 games - the same average he posted in 52 games at Double-A Bowie. Overall, he's hitting .365/.429/.536 with 20 doubles, one triple, seven homers,

Hearing from Showalter, Roberts and Dickerson after 6-1 win

The Orioles are deciding whether to option left-hander Wei-Yin Chen during the All-Star break so he can make another start after being sidelined for two months with a strained oblique. Chen made a triumphant return tonight, holding the Rangers to one run and three hits over seven innings in a 6-1 victory at Camden Yards. He hadn't pitched since May 12 in Minnesota. Asked if

Dickerson has strained shoulder (with quotes)

Chris Dickerson was scratched from the Orioles' lineup tonight after straining his left shoulder during batting practice. Dickerson ended the session and walked off the field with head athletic trainer Richie Bancells. Nolan Reimold replaced Dickerson as the designated hitter and contributed a three-run homer to the Orioles' 6-1 win over the Rangers. Dickerson will undergo an MRI on Friday if the shoulder hasn't improved.

Reimold delivers in four-run inning (Chen goes seven, O's win 6-1)

The Orioles sent nine batters to the plate in the fourth inning. They also sent the umpires inside to review a call in center field. By scoring four runs, the Orioles increased their lead to 6-0 over the Rangers on another sweltering night at Camden Yards. Nolan Reimold hit a three-run homer on a fly ball into the left field corner that casually dropped into

Chen with another drama-free first inning (Machado with RBI triple)

In 32 starts last season, left-hander Wei-Yin Chen posted a 5.91 ERA and allowed seven home runs in the first inning. In his eight starts this season, he posted a 2.25 ERA and didn't surrender a home run in the opening frame. Fresh off the disabled list tonight, Chen retired the Rangers in order in the top of the first inning at Camden Yards. Ian

Dickerson scratched from lineup (updated)

Chris Dickerson is a late scratch from the Orioles lineup tonight against the Texas Rangers at Camden Yards. The Orioles tweeted a new lineup with Nolan Reimold now serving as the designated hitter. No explanation has been provided. Dickerson was supposed to be the DH and bat eighth against Rangers right-hander Josh Lindblom. Instead, Reimold is the DH and will bat ninth, with second baseman

Notes before tonight's game

Outfielder Steve Pearce underwent an MRA on his left wrist today in Sarasota to determine whether there's any structural damage. Hand specialist Dr. Brian Schofield examined Pearce in Sarasota. He performed the surgery on Nick Markakis' left thumb last year. An MRA involves dye being injected in the wrist. Infielder Jonathan Schoop, on the minor league disabled list with a stress fracture in his lower

Chen returns from disabled list (with lineups)

After missing almost two months with a strained right oblique, Wei-Yin Chen will make his first start since May 12 for the Orioles tonight. Prior to his injury, Chen was 3-3 with a 3.04 ERA in eight starts. In his only start against the Rangers last season, Chen allowed two runs in 7 2/3 innings. Brian Roberts gets the start at second base while Chris

Stinson being recalled

The Orioles will recall pitcher Josh Stinson from Triple-A Norfolk as the replacement for Kevin Gausman, who was optioned last night. An announcement will be made later today. Stinson is 4-4 with a 4.23 ERA in 15 starts for Norfolk, with 94 hits allowed, 34 walks and 58 strikeouts in 89 1/3 innings. Stinson went seven innings on Saturday and would be working on short

Showalter's plans for second base

Brian Roberts snapped a 1-for-18 streak last night with a game-tying RBI single in the second inning. He was back at second base after serving as the designated hitter in three of the past four games. Orioles manager Buck Showalter has been easing Roberts back onto the field since the hamstring surgery and extended absence. Ryan Flaherty was getting the bulk of the starts at

Britton and Gausman optioned

The Orioles have optioned pitchers Zach Britton and Kevin Gausman to Triple-A Norfolk. The corresponding moves will be announced on Wednesday. Wei-Yin Chen will come off the disabled list and replace Britton in the rotation. The Orioles also will call up a reliever to take Gausman's spot in the bullpen. Britton allowed five runs and eight hits in five innings tonight, with three walks and

Showalter speaks after 8-4 loss

Orioles manager Buck Showalter told reporters that his club will make a roster move or moves later tonight. Stay tuned. The obvious move is activating Wei-Yin Chen from the disabled list and optioning Zach Britton, who allowed five runs and eight hits in five innings in the Orioles' 8-4 loss to the Rangers. It's possible that the Orioles also bring up a fresh bullpen arm.

Britton done after five innings (O's lose 8-4)

If Zach Britton is making his last start for the Orioles tonight, he isn't leaving on a high note. Britton lasted only five innings and allowed five runs and eight hits, with three walks, no strikeouts and two home runs. He threw 91 pitches, 55 for strikes. Kevin Gausman replaced Britton, who had permitted three earned runs in his last two starts covering 12 1/3

Machado turns from student to teacher (Beltre homers twice, O's down 5-2)

Orioles third baseman Manny Machado has 122 hits this season, tying him with Baltimore native Al Kaline (1955) for the most hits before the All-Star break by a player under 22 years old, according to STATS. Machado's 47 extra-base hits through July 5 already were the most in major league history before the break by a player under 21. Machado may be facing his biggest

Updates on Steve Johnson, Pearce, Gausman and more

Steve Johnson, on the disabled list with a strained left oblique, will throw live batting practice Thursday in Sarasota. Johnson made 35 throws off a mound yesterday and reported that he's feeling much better, with improved command of his pitches. The next step may be a simulated game, followed by a rehab assignment with a minor league affiliate. Manager Buck Showalter told reporters that outfielder

Britton gets the call (with Rangers lineup)

Left-hander Zach Britton will be on the mound as the Orioles attempt to even their four-game series against the Texas Rangers at a game apiece. It could be Britton's last start with the Orioles for a while. With left-hander Wei-Yin Chen due back to start Wednesday's game, a roster move will need to be made to accommodate Chen, and Britton could be on the bubble.

What's the plan for Gausman?

Kevin Gausman warmed up in the bullpen last night as the game moved toward the later innings and the Orioles were trying to avoid another loss. He didn't pitch, making him available in long relief tonight or Wednesday. Manager Buck Showalter prefers having a right-hander to back up lefties Zach Britton and Wei-Yin Chen, the next two starters to face the Rangers. What happens to

Showalter speaks after 8-5 loss

You can point to the meltdown in the sixth inning tonight as a major reason why the Orioles lost to the Rangers 8-5 at Camden Yards. Or you can focus on how the Orioles went 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position and stranded 10 runners. I chose the latter during manager Buck Showalter's postgame press conference. "That was one of them," Showalter said. "We had

Sixth inning woes continue (Wieters homers, O's lose 8-5)

The Orioles gave up six runs to the Rangers in the top of the sixth tonight to fall behind 8-3 and continue their woes in that inning. Opponents have outscored the Orioles 69-40 in the sixth. They've scored 40 in the first, 39 in the second, 38 in the third, 62 in the fourth, 46 in the fifth, 53 in the seventh, 26 in the

Orioles littering bases (updated)

The Orioles haven't scored in the first three innings tonight against Rangers left-hander Derek Holland. It's not due to a lack of opportunities. The Orioles are 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position and have stranded five. They trail 1-0 as we head to the top of the fourth. Manny Machado and Adam Jones had back-to-back singles in the first inning. J.J. Hardy led off the

Davis chosen for Home Run Derby

Robinson Cano didn't ignore the obvious choice while picking his team for the Home Run Derby. Cano, the captain who made the selections for the American League, announced that Orioles first baseman Chris Davis will be among the four participants. Cano also chose Tigers first baseman Prince Fielder. He hasn't decided on the fourth participant. National League captain David Wright selected Bryce Harper, Carlos Gonzalez

McFarland feeling better, and more notes

Left-hander T.J. McFarland threw two scoreless innings yesterday in relief of starter Jason Hammel, despite a nasty cold that he kept quiet from manager Buck Showalter, who didn't find out until the end of the game. McFarland said he's feeling much better today, though traces of the cold remain in his system. "I didn't want to tell anyone," he said. "It's just one of those

More on the rotation

Left-hander Zach Britton will start Tuesday night against the Rangers, and Wei-Yin Chen confirmed that he's coming off the disabled list to start Wednesday night. Miguel Gonzalez will close out the series Thursday night. Britton has allowed seven earned runs in 23 innings over four starts since being recalled. "I feel good," he said. "I had a good bullpen side, and I think staying on

Lineups for Rangers-Orioles opener

Right-hander Scott Feldman takes the mound for the Orioles tonight in the opener of a four-game series against his old team, the Texas Rangers. Left-hander Derek Holland will oppose him. Brian Roberts is back in the lineup as the Orioles designated hitter tonight. His travels around the batting order take him to the eight-hole. He's previously batted fifth, sixth and ninth since returning from the

Gamboa moving up to Norfolk

Eddie Gamboa, the knuckleball pitcher who recently threw a seven-inning no-hitter at Double-A Bowie, will make his next start for Triple-A Norfolk. Gamboa is scheduled to make his 2013 Tides debut Wednesday night at Gwinnett. Hall of Famer Phil Niekro, who's been working with Gamboa on his signature pitch, is expected to be in Gwinnett. Gamboa, 29, is 4-6 with a 3.64 ERA in 16

Today's game and leftovers from yesterday

Scott Feldman makes his Orioles home debut tonight and it just happens to come against the Texas Rangers, his team for the first eight seasons of his major league career. Feldman is familiar with Camden Yards, having gone 3-0 with a 2.49 ERA in seven appearances over 21 2/3 innings. In three starts, he's 3-0 with a 2.55 ERA and two quality starts in 17

Postgame comments from Jones, Markakis and Johnson

NEW YORK - Adam Jones delivered his seventh career go-ahead home run today in the ninth inning or later, and his first since Sept. 19, 2012 at Seattle. This one came against Mariano Rivera and gave the Orioles a 2-1 victory over the Yankees. Considering the circumstances, how big was it? "It's off the greatest closer in the history of the game. I'll always remember

Showalter speaks after 2-1 victory

NEW YORK - Future Hall of Fame closer Mariano Rivera has lost nine times to the Orioles in his illustrious career. No other team has beaten him in more than seven games. Then again, he's faced the Orioles more than any other team, as well. The Orioles avoided a three-game sweep today on Adam Jones' two-run homer off Rivera in the ninth inning, giving them

Hammel's winless streak continues (Jones homers off Rivera, O's win 2-1)

NEW YORK - Orioles starter Jason Hammel gave up one run today. That's the good part. Hammel lasted only five innings, threw 102 pitches and left with the Orioles trailing the Yankees 1-0. Those are the bad parts. Hammel hasn't won since May 27 in Washington. His winless streak has reached seven starts. Rule 5 pick T.J. McFarland replaced Hammel to begin the bottom of

Ishikawa claimed by Yankees, notes on McLouth and Davis (updated)

NEW YORK - The Yankees have claimed first baseman Travis Ishikawa off waivers, according to an Orioles official - the exact scenario that the club envisioned while debating what to do with him. The Orioles didn't allow Ishikawa to opt out of his contract at Triple-A Norfolk, summoning him to Detroit on June 18 while placing Miguel Gonzalez on paternity leave. They designated him for

Chen will start Tuesday or Wednesday

NEW YORK - The Orioles are listing Scott Feldman, Zach Britton, Miguel Gonzalez and Chris Tillman as their probable starters for the Rangers series that begins Monday night at Camden Yards. However, that's subject to change. Wei-Yin Chen said he felt great Saturday while throwing 43 pitches in his bullpen session, and manager Buck Showalter said Chen will start Tuesday or Wednesday night. Showalter also

Orioles-Yankees lineups for series finale

NEW YORK - The Orioles will look to get a win vs. the Yankees before heading home, sending Jason Hammel to the mound. Nate McLouth will get a break from the field, serving as the designated hitter in the leadoff role. Chris Dickerson will get the start in left. He is hitting .276 with four home runs off right-handers this season. For the Orioles Nate

Today's game and yesterday's All-Star selections

NEW YORK - The Orioles have lost four of their last five games, and taking an early lead against the Yankees hasn't mattered. They are now 30-20 when scoring first this season. Need some good news? The Orioles only struck out seven times yesterday, breaking their streak of fanning at least 10 times in three consecutive games. Details on the parade down Pratt St. will

Showalter on the four All-Stars

NEW YORK - Orioles manager Buck Showalter downplayed the All-Star voting for much of the process, relying on reporters for updates, turning his attention to it only in the final week. Showalter cast his ballots a few days ago. And he showed his pride in the four representatives this afternoon while meeting with reporters following a 5-4 loss to the Yankees. "I'm real proud of

Jones, Davis, Hardy named All-Star starters, Machado a reserve (updated)

NEW YORK - For the first time since 2005, the Orioles will have four representatives at the All-Star Game. Outfielder Adam Jones, first baseman Chris Davis and shortstop J.J. Hardy were voted into the Midsummer Classic, which will be played July 16 at Citi Field in New York. Third baseman Manny Machado was chosen as a reserve. Davis leads all of Major League Baseball with

Chris crossing

NEW YORK - I have postgame quotes from Chris Tillman and Chris Davis, and one clever title to my blog entry. Tillman on his start "I felt good physically. The stuff was there. I fell behind every now and then. These guys grind out at-bats and make you throw a lot of pitches early. Give them credit. It was a tough one for me today.

Showalter speaks after 5-4 loss

NEW YORK - The Orioles have lost three straight games, all by one run. They're now 12-14 in one-run games this season, compared to 29-9 last year. The Yankees had 10 hits today off starter Chris Tillman, all of them singles, in a 5-4 win before 42,678. "But they're hits," said manager Buck Showalter. "They're getting them at the right time. The same has happened

Orioles acquire Liddi, DFA Canzler, lose 5-4

NEW YORK - The Orioles made another trade today, acquiring infielder Alex Liddi and International Signing Bonus Slot No. 3 from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for the Orioles' International Signing Bonus Slot No. 2. Liddi has been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk. Liddi, 24, has appeared in 61 major league games for the Mariners since 2011, batting .208/.266/.370 with six home runs and 16 RBIs.

Tillman singled out by Yankees

NEW YORK - Chris Tillman's road magic disappeared today. Tillman was removed after 5 1/3 innings and 111 pitches. He allowed five runs - the most since May 29 in Washington - and 10 hits, with two walks and three strikeouts. Manager Buck Showalter went to his bullpen after Tillman walked No. 9 hitter Chris Stewart. Brian Matusz stranded two runners. Eduardo Nunez bounced an

Showalter not ready to change closers (we're tied)

NEW YORK - Nolan Reimold reached on an infield hit in the second inning, took second base on a throwing error by Yankees pitcher Andy Pettitte and scored on Alexi Casilla's double. Casilla has nine RBIs as he continues to chase Chris Davis. "I just want to get Casi back on the field," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said before the game. "He's been sitting a

Davis homers, Jones singles and keeps his helmet intact

NEW YORK - Orioles first baseman Chris Davis set career highs last season with 33 home runs and 85 RBIs. His shot to center field today in the top of the first inning, following Adam Jones' two-out single, gave him 33 home runs and 85 RBIs. Instant analysis: Davis is going to set new career highs in both categories. The ball hit the top of

Orioles-Yankees lineups

NEW YORK - The Orioles turn to arguably their top starter this afternoon as they look to bounce back from last night's heartbreaking loss to the Yankees. Chris Tillman takes the mound having won seven straight decisions to push his record to 10-2. He has five quality starts in his last six outings and has allowed more than three runs just once in his last

This, that and the other

NEW YORK - Manny Machado turns 21 today. No more jokes about not being able to legally order a beer. Machado's nine-game hitting streak ended last night. Has nothing to do with his age. Jim Johnson has walked 14 batters this season. He walked 15 in 2012. He's not getting the ball down, he's falling behind in the count and he's either walking batters or

More comments following Orioles' 3-2 loss

NEW YORK - Orioles manager Buck Showalter was clearly agitated following tonight's 3-2 loss to the Yankees. Plate umpire Gary Darling's strike zone did nothing to improve his mood. It actually soured it. Asked to name a key play in the ninth inning, Showalter replied, "I'd look more at the other eight innings. I don't dwell on that. There were some things we could do

Jim Johnson and Matt Wieters discuss blown save and loss

NEW YORK - Orioles closer Jim Johnson had 51 saves in 54 chances last season. He's already blown six saves this year, doubling the amount from 2012, to go along with seven losses. Johnson still began the night leading the majors with 29 saves, but he hasn't been the same pitcher. And he's being asked the same questions while standing at his locker. Tonight, it

Gonzalez escapes jam in fifth to hold lead (O's lose 3-2)

NEW YORK - Miguel Gonzalez threw 92 pitches in the first five innings tonight at Yankee Stadium. Not the most efficient outing, but he continues to hold a 2-1 lead. Gonzalez walked the No. 9 hitter, David Adams, leading off the bottom of the fifth. Ichiro Suzuki doubled with one out, and the Orioles walked Robinson Cano intentionally with first base open. Cano was 0-for-2

Showalter on Markakis, Wieters homers (O's lead 2-1)

NEW YORK - The roll call from the bleacher creatures at Yankee Stadium has lost its appeal with this lineup. Instead of the fans in the center field bleachers chanting "De-rek Je-ter" until the future Hall of Famer turns and waves his glove - something I always looked forward to on my visits here - we're subjected to "Cruz, Cruz, Cruz." No offense to Luis

Showalter on Chen, the rotation and more

NEW YORK - Orioles manager Buck Showalter, sitting in the visiting dugout at Yankee Stadium while his club took batting practice, told reporters that he will make a decision on Wei-Yin Chen after the left-hander throws in the bullpen. "If he's physically ready, we'll activate him on the fifth or sixth day," Showalter said. "We've got some different options that present themselves now. We'll take

Chen provides update

NEW YORK - Left-hander Wei-Yin Chen is in the visiting clubhouse at Yankee Stadium today, though he remains on the 15-day disabled list. Chen tossed seven scoreless innings yesterday in his final injury-rehab start at Double-A Bowie. In two games, he allowed four runs and nine hits in 12 innings, with two walks and eight strikeouts. Chen said he will throw a bullpen session on

Orioles-Yankees lineups

NEW YORK - Matt Wieters, Ryan Flaherty and Alexi Casilla took early batting practice this afternoon. Wieters is 6-for-42 with three RBIs in his last 13 games. He's batting .225/.282/.393 this season. But he's 9-for-21 with three doubles and three homers against Yankees starter Ivan Nova. Brian Roberts will serve as the designated hitter tonight and hit ninth, while Ryan Flaherty will get the start

A few notes before tonight's game

NEW YORK - Since July 29, 2012, the Orioles have the best winning percentage in baseball at .605 and are tied with the Athletics for the most wins with 89. The Orioles are 15-8 in their last 23 games against the Yankees after going 12-41 in the previous 53. They're 6-3 against them this season, but they lost two of three in the Bronx April

What's next for the rotation?

The Orioles are listing Miguel Gonzalez, Chris Tillman and Jason Hammel as their three starters for the Yankees series that starts tonight in the Bronx. Zach Britton allowed only two runs over seven innings yesterday in Chicago. Wei-Yin Chen tossed seven scoreless innings yesterday and retired 13 of the last 14 batters he faced in his second and last injury-rehab start with Double-A Bowie. Scott

Jones takes a walk (Dunn hits walk-off HR)

It finally happened. The ground beneath our feet didn't freeze over. Dogs and cats aren't best friends. But Orioles center fielder Adam Jones did, indeed, draw a walk in the first inning. Jones' two-out free pass off White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana was his first since May 18. That's 43 games and 184 plate appearances - the longest stretch in baseball. He left Eric Hinske

Hardy and Roberts move up in order (with White Sox lineup)

Orioles manager Buck Showalter is batting shortstop J.J. Hardy fifth and second baseman Brian Roberts sixth for today's series finale against the Chicago White Sox. Hardy has batted fifth in 31 career games, posting a .231/.274/.346 line. Roberts has appeared in the sixth slot in four previous games during his career, going 2-for-2. For the Orioles Nick Markakis RF Manny Machado 3B Adam Jones CF

Orioles seek one more win in Windy City

The Orioles will go for another series win this afternoon as they play their final game at US Celluar Field in 2013. They also will try again to move a season-high 12 games above .500. The Orioles have the most road wins in the majors (69) since the start of the 2012 season. They'd like to register an even 70 before heading to the Bronx

Urrutia, Gamboa honored by organization, O's take lead in eighth (O's win 4-2)

The Orioles have chosen outfielder Henry Urrutia as their minor league Player of the Month and knuckleballer Eddie Gamboa as their Pitcher of the Month for June. Hard to argue with those choices. Urrutia moved up to Triple-A Norfolk, where he's 1-for-4 with a double and two runs scored tonight to leave his average at .238 with the Tides. He batted .365/.433/.550 with 16 doubles,

Updates on Scott Feldman and Steve Johnson (Feldman done after sixth)

Scott Feldman's first inning with the Orioles tonight was a bit rocky. Feldman allowed a run on three hits to produce a 1-1 tie. He also struck out two batters. Feldman retired the first two Chicago batters before surrendering a single to Alex Rios and an RBI double to Adam Dunn, who was 1-for-10 against him lifetime before tonight. Dayan Viciedo also singled, but Dunn

A few more pregame notes

I mentioned earlier that Scott Feldman is the 13th different starting pitcher used by the Orioles this season, exceeding last year's total. The Orioles hadn't used that many starters since 2008. Feldman will be the 14th player to make his Orioles debut this season. We're not counting left-hander Mike Belfiore, who was recalled without pitching in a game. White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers is 5-for-7

Valencia optioned, Orioles and White Sox lineups, notes

Scott Feldman takes the mound for the Orioles tonight in the second game of their series against the Chicago White Sox, making him their 13th starter in 2013. They used 12 last season. To make room for Feldman on the 25-man roster, the Orioles optioned infielder Danny Valencia to Triple-A Norfolk. Valencia is batting .230/.277/.508 with five doubles, four homers and eight RBIs in 21

Wondering about today's roster move, Rauch released, game time change

The Orioles will officially add pitcher Scott Feldman to their 25-man roster this afternoon and hand him the ball for tonight's game against the Chicago White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. They must clear a spot for him, of course. They have an extra bench player and a bunch of left-handed starters lined up to face them. Including John Danks last night, the Orioles are

MacPhail on the Orioles, his past trades and his desire to return to baseball

As soon as news broke of yesterday's trade between the Orioles and Cubs, my thoughts immediately shifted to Andy MacPhail. And that made even more sense when you consider that I spent about 30 minutes with him on the phone earlier in the morning. Coincidence? Of course. What else would it be? I don't have the power to jinx or influence trades. But any deal

Roberts homers for first time in more than two years (O's lose 5-2)

It's been a while. Brian Roberts, making only his fifth start of the season, gave the Orioles a 1-0 lead over the White Sox tonight with a home run in the top of the third inning. Roberts lined an 89 mph fastball from left-hander John Danks over the fence in left field, his first home run since April 13, 2011 off former Yankee A.J. Burnett.

Clevenger: "I was so happy and pumped to come back to my hometown"

Though catcher Steve Clevenger is new to the Orioles' organization, he has such a familiar look about him. He grew up in Pigtown, about five minutes from Camden Yards, cheering favorites Cal Ripken Jr. and Joe Orsulak. He graduated from Mount St. Joseph in Baltimore and currently lives in Linthicum. He played five years with Youse's Orioles, the summer scout team. Teammates included Steve Johnson,

Reimold, Valencia in tonight's lineup

Nolan Reimold is off the disabled list and starting in left field tonight in Chicago. Danny Valencia is the designated hitter, as manager Buck Showalter leans heavily to the right side against White Sox left-hander John Danks. Brian Roberts is starting at second base and batting ninth. The Orioles will attempt to move a season-high 12 games above .500. They've been 11 games over .500

Orioles trade Arrieta, Strop to Cubs for Feldman, Clevenger

The Orioles didn't wait until the final hours of the non-waiver trade deadline to acquire a starting pitcher. Looking to improve their rotation, the Orioles have obtained pitcher Scott Feldman and catcher/corner infielder Steve Clevenger from the Chicago Cubs for pitchers Jake Arrieta and Pedro Strop, and international signing bonus slots 3 and 4. Feldman, 30, is 7-6 with a 3.46 ERA and nine quality

Hammel in search of a win

Did everyone enjoy the off-day? The Orioles flew to Chicago last night, and outfielder Nolan Reimold must have been with them. He wasn't in Double-A Bowie's lineup, which pretty much confirmed that he would be activated from the disabled list before tonight's game. The trick is making room for him on the 25-man roster. In any other series, Danny Valencia would be the logical candidate

Jurrjens optioned to Norfolk (updated and notes)

The Jair Jurrjens transaction is official. And still a bit confusing. The Orioles have officially optioned Jurrjens to Triple-A Norfolk this afternoon after designating him off the 25-man roster yesterday to create a spot for second baseman Brian Roberts, who was activated from the disabled list. Jurrjens has 72 hours to report to Norfolk, which he intends to do. He'll reenter the Tides' rotation and

Markakis drops to fourth in All-Star voting (with more notes)

If you're still holding a grudge over Jose Bautista's antics after his home run off Orioles reliever Darren O'Day in Toronto, you won't feel any better about him after Major League Baseball announced the latest American League voting results for the 84th All-Star Game. Bautista, a three-time All-Star and fan-elected starter in each of the last two seasons, has totaled 2,679,230 votes to pull in

Did Davis call his shot?

Each day seems to bring another batch of statistics on Orioles first baseman Chris Davis. Club records he's on pace to crush. And records belonging to legendary Hall of Famers from the early 1900s. Every home run or extra-base hit brings him closer to another milestone or moves him from select company to a place all his own. Last night's opposite-field shot gave him 31

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