Weeks off and running

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Jemile Weeks made a leaping catch at second base in the Orioles' first intrasquad game. He singled, walked, and moved up a base on a fly ball into right-center field in the second game.

In two innings of today's exhibition opener against the Rays, Weeks has doubled, walked, stolen a base and scored two runs.

Is this guy trying to tell us something?

"It is a confidence-builder," Weeks said earlier today. "It's good to get out there and let them see some of your capabilities and what you can do out there in the field. It's a good thing for me."

The Orioles scored three runs off left-hander Erik Bedard in the first. Weeks came home on Steve Clevenger's RBI single, and Alex Gonzalez produced a two-run single after back-to-back walks by Nolan Reimold and Henry Urrutia.

Urrutia didn't draw a walk with the Orioles last season. He's walked twice this week.

Bedard, the former Oriole, threw 25 pitches in the inning.

Weeks walked with one out in the second inning, advanced on a stolen base and Francisco Peguero's infield hit, and scored on a wild pitch.

Orioles 4, Rays 0

Weeks welcomed the chance to lead off today.

"Hopefully, it's an indication of an idea of where I may be able to fit into a lineup," he said. "That gives them a look at how I handle the position. I'm excited about it and hopefully we can do this more often than not."

Weeks' baserunning skills have been on display this week.

"Not only speed, but being smart with the speed is one of the things I try to pride myself in," he said. "I've been learning over the years how to be smarter and to be the speed guy that I'm supposed to be. That is one of my biggest traits."

Chris Tillman allowed one hit, a double by Yunel Escobar, in two innings. He struck out three batters.

I lost track of his pitch count. My head's not in the game today. Fortunately, the Rays will announce it later.

Zach Britton will work the next two innings.


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