SARASOTA, Fla. - A frustrating spring continues for infielder Alexi Casilla.
Casilla is sitting at his locker instead of making the trip to Dunedin for today’s game against the Blue Jays. He’s been scratched from the Orioles lineup because of swelling in his left knee.
“They pushed me off the bus,” Casilla said.
A rare moment of levity from a player who is irritated to be left behind today.
Casilla was supposed to start at shortstop, but Jonathan Schoop will take his place. He was scratched from Friday’s game against the Twins in Fort Myers and sent back to Sarasota for the same reason.
Casilla hyperextended his knee while turning a double play in his first game after being shut down previously with a right hamstring injury.
“Now we’ve got to test run again today,” he said. “This is so frustrating. So frustrating.
“The head trainer (Richie Bancells) pushed me off the bus. My knee is still a little bit swollen. I feel great. I feel good to play. I know in the past I’ve played with worse. Right now, I feel great, just a little swollen. But they pushed me off the bus.”
Casilla, who’s 0-for-5 in three games, stopped by manager Buck Showalter’s office to get an explanation and plead his case.
“I told him, ‘Hey, I’m ready, I feel good to play.’ But the head trainer, I know he’s trying to protect himself. I understand his job,” Casilla said. “But he’s not in my body to feel what I feel. If I say I’m ready to play, I’m ready to play. It’s his word against mine. Let me play.
“He’s just protecting his job and I understand that, but I’m ready to play.”
The Orioles are trying to protect Casilla and prevent the injury from growing more serious. He’s not 100 percent physically, as evidenced by the swelling.
For the Orioles
Jemile Weeks 2B
Jonathan Schoop SS
Henry Urrutia RF
Adam Jones CF
Steve Clevenger C
Nolan Reimold DH
Ryan Flaherty 3B
Michael Almanzar 1B
Quintin Berry LF
Miguel Gonzalez RHP
For the Jays
Jose Reyes SS
Colby Rasmus CF
Jose Bautista RF
Edwin Encarnacion 1B
Adam Lind DH
Melky Cabrera LF
Brett Lawrie 3B
Dioner Navarro C
Ryan Goins 2B
Todd Redmond RHP
Note: Outfielder David Lough remains day-to-day after being scratched from Friday’s lineup with neck stiffness.
Lough reported to camp again this morning to receive treatment and was sent back to the hotel to rest.