Orioles option Monell and reassign Paul (Yoon optioned)

SARASOTA, Fla. - There’s no longer any doubt that Steve Clevenger is the leading in-house candidate to back up catcher Matt Wieters.

The Orioles optioned catcher Johnny Monell following today’s 7-4 loss to the Rays. They also reassigned outfielder Xavier Paul to minor league camp and will make one more roster move.

Clevenger hasn’t won the job at this point in camp. The Orioles continue to check outside the organization.

Left fielder David Lough passed his impact test and manager Buck Showalter decided to take him to Bradenton Thursday night. Lough will play the second half of the game against the Pirates.

Showalter reminded reporters that third baseman Manny Machado won’t automatically be cleared to play in games after Dr. Neal ElAttrache examines his left knee Thursday afternoon. That decision continues to rest with the Orioles.

As Showalter put it, the exam isn’t a “get out of jail free card.”

Update: The Orioles optioned Suk-min Yoon, who allowed one run and two hits in three innings.

Yoon isn’t ready to start the season with the Orioles and will be assigned to Triple-A Norfolk.

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