Aquino gets Saturday’s starting assignment (plus other notes)

CINCINNATI - Left-hander Jayson Aquino will start Saturday night against the Red Sox at Camden Yards, with Alec Asher staying in the bullpen.

Asher is backing up left-hander Wade Miley tonight.

Jayson-Aquino-throw-orange-sidebar.jpgAquino will be making his first major league start. Manager Buck Showalter indicated that the club wanted a left-hander in that spot. Also, the Orioles need to find out exactly what they have in Aquino, who was outstanding in spring training with two runs allowed in 15 innings.

Aquino tossed six scoreless innings in his second start at Triple-A Norfolk before the Orioles recalled him.

The Orioles won’t need a fifth starter again until May due to the off-day on April 27.

Outfielder Seth Smith’s right hamstring hasn’t improved, according to Showalter, and he may be forced onto the disabled list. A decision could be made by Friday.

The hamstring soreness isn’t any worse, but there needs to be improvement.

Chris Tillman had a good work day and remains scheduled to start Saturday afternoon at Single-A Frederick. Tillman will remain with the Keys to make his third injury rehab start.

Tillman logged 2 2/3 innings and threw 42 pitches Monday at Double-A Bowie.

Outfielder Joey Rickard will take batting practice Friday or Saturday after hitting soft tosses today. Rickard is on the disabled list with a sprained left middle finger.

Zach Britton’s forearm continues to feel better and the Orioles remain encouraged. He’s still going to have an MRI on his elbow Friday in Baltimore, but it already had been scheduled.

The tarp has been pulled off the infield and the sun is peeking through the clouds. We had rain earlier and it remains in the forecast for later tonight.

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