SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles will sign left-hander Johan Santana to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training, the announcement most likely coming later today.
Santana will work out at the Ed Smith Stadium complex instead of being sent to Twin Lakes Park. The Orioles want to monitor his recovery from a second shoulder surgery and keep him with Chris Correnti, the club’s assistant athletic trainer who has a relationship with Santana dating back to their years with the Mets.
Executive vice president Dan Duquette walked through the media workroom this morning and was asked whether he had any news.
“Almost,” he replied. “In a little while.”
Reliever Edgmer Escalona underwent an MRI on his right shoulder and said doctors advised him yesterday to stop throwing for three to four weeks to clear the inflammation.
Escalona was charged with five runs in one inning Saturday in Port Charlotte. He tried to pitch through the discomfort.
“It started a couple weeks ago,” he said. “I tried to ice it. There’s a lot of inflammation.”
The news came as a big disappointment to Escalona, who’s on the 40-man roster and attempting to win a bullpen spot after the Orioles signed him in November as a free agent.
“This is my first time with this team and I tried to show them that I’m a good pitcher,” he said. “I tried to show the Orioles that they got a good reliever who can help. And now, I feel terrible because this happened in spring training.
“I’m going to try to do everything to be ready. I’m going to try to do my rehab perfect and show the Orioles that they got a good pitcher.”
Henry Urrutia said his right shoulder is much better. He threw from 60 feet yesterday and will throw from 90 feet and take batting practice today.
Urrutia hopes to play Wednesday night against the Twins in Fort Myers.
“The pain has stopped,” he said. “I’m good.”
Alexi Casilla is finally making progress in his recovery from a right hamstring injury.
“I feel very good today, the best day I’ve had so far,” he said. “Walking, I don’t feel it. I feel normal again.”
Casilla will run in a pool today and do a few exercises. He plans on running outside Wednesday morning.
“I know it feels very good,” he said.
Nolan Reimold is back in camp after being sent back to the hotel yesterday with food poisoning.
Reimold ate at a popular breakfast spot Sunday night and “it was all downhill after that,” he said.
“I’ve got a lot of picky eaters in my family, kids, so pancakes are easy. Getting breakfast food after a long, hot game wasn’t the best choice, but that’s where we went. Went and ate, and then gradually felt worse and worse until it all came to a climax around 3 or 4 in the morning.
“When I came in yesterday, I still felt like crap but I didn’t have a temperature or anything like that, so it wasn’t the flu, it wasn’t contagious.
“I didn’t feel very good. It was a rough morning.”