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 game at the Ed Smith Stadium complex.

Eric Thames, who’s been sidelined with a fractured bone in his left hand, took batting practice in Sarasota and could soon join Triple-A Norfolk’s roster.

The Orioles acquired Thames from the Mariners on June 30 for infielder Ty Kelly.

First baseman Chris Davis is battling more than a 1-for-24 slump that includes 13 strikeouts. He’s also been weakened by a sinus infection that started on Saturday and worsened Monday and Tuesday.

“I still feel terrible,” he said. “I felt a little bit better yesterday. Slowly feeling a little better. I’m still draining really bad, just like you do when your sick. Your body’s weak.”

Davis isn’t searching for excuses for his slump, but the illness isn’t doing him any favors at the plate. He’s trying to battle through it every day.

“I think that’s part of it,” he said. “That’s part of every day. People want to talk about slumps and this and that, but a lot of things go unsaid. A guy’s not feeling good, stuff going on at home. But a lot of people don’t want to hear about that. They just want to see you play well.

“I’m sure it has something to do with it, but at the same time, it doesn’t make me swing at pitches out of the strike zone. I think these guys have been super careful with the middle part of the order. I haven’t seen a lot of pitches to hit, and obviously you get behind the first two games, you try to get something started. A little too aggressive.

“My last at-bat last night, I wasn’t going to swing at all. I was literally going to stand there and take until I got two strikes. I got in a favorable count and was looking for a changeup, got it, and it was down and I fouled it off. I went back to take mode. He threw a pitch that was borderline strike and then eventually ended up walking me.”

Davis may continue that strategy until pitchers start challenging him again.

“I think that’s something I might have to start doing a little bit more, being more patient than I already have been,” he said.

Davis won’t ask out of the lineup despite being under the weather.

“I don’t really feel like we’re in that position right now, obviously, with it being this close to the All-Star break, even though I’m not going to get a break,” Davis said. “We don’t really have another first baseman. Guys are coming back off the DL right now - Nolan (Reimold) and giving him a chance to get some at-bats. Now Dickerson’s hurt, or was feeling some discomfort yesterday.

“It’s not anything that’s going to keep me off the field. I don’t think I’m a guy who’s going to sit on the bench just because I’ve got a head cold. I think the only game I’ve missed this year was because of the knee injury in Anaheim and I wanted to play that day, but they scheduled the MRI conveniently right around game time.

“I think as long as you can stay consistent in your approach and your daily work, you’ll be rewarded at the end of the season.”

Down on the farm, left-hander Zach Britton is expected to start Sunday for Triple-A Norfolk, with Kevin Gausman following him in relief. Gausman will report to the Tides once they return from Gwinnett.

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