SARASOTA, Fla. - First baseman Chris Davis and infielder Ryan Mountcastle have reported to camp two days before position players are required. Still no sign of Manny Machado, Jonathan Schoop, Luis Sardiñas and Rubén Tejada in the main clubhouse.
Davis’ moustache could have gotten here two days ahead of him.
“They’re trickling in pretty good now,” said manager Buck Showalter. “We don’t go on the field until Monday, so a lot of early arrivals.
“It’s funny, a lot of young guys like (DJ) Stewart and Mountcastle and those guys, a lot of time you don’t see them because they don’t know they can come in early. But I know Brian (Graham) has been communicating with them to come in.”
Closer Zach Britton, placed on the 60-day disabled list yesterday to open a spot for Andrew Cashner on the 40-man roster, is eligible to return on May 28.
Today’s bullpen sessions involved Jayson Aquino, Dylan Bundy, Jhan Mariñez, Richard Bleier, Kevin Gausman, Miguel Castro, Donnie Hart, Jason Gurka, Jimmy Yacabonis, Nestor Cortes Jr., Jeff Ferrell, Stefan Crichton, Joely Rodríguez, Hunter Harvey, Eddie Gamboa, David Hess and Pedro Araujo.
Gausman was throwing off a mound for the first time.
Showalter said Andrew Cashner bumps the camp starter count to nine. He won’t subtract another pitcher from the competition.
“It won’t change right now,” Showalter said.
Showalter noted how many players inside the clubhouse voiced their approval of Cashner’s arrival, but there wasn’t a full-blown celebration that may have offended the younger guys attempting to break camp with the team.
“I think they’re respectful of their teammates,” he said. “It’s a group that kind of keeps their emotions publicly in check a little bit, but I think they also have respect for a lot of guys that are here that are trying to win a job and that might take the possibility away. But I’ve gotten some feedback from five or six of the guys that are obviously going to be on the club. (Brad) Brach was a teammate with him. They were pretty close.
“I got some comments from a lot of guys today that obviously are excited about his addition.”
I wrote earlier today that the Orioles announced their minor league coaching staffs and Buck Britton, older brother of the Orioles’ closer, has been named manager at Single-A Delmarva. He spent one season as the hitting coach before earning a promotion.
Showalter approached Britton, 31, a few years ago with the idea of becoming a minor league manager. Britton decided that he should ease into it as a coach, declining a chance to manage at short-season Single-A Aberdeen.
Showalter anticipates a smooth transition for Britton this summer.
“He’s going to have some good people around him,” Showalter said. “I think Brian saw some things with him last year that his suspicion would come out. A lot of guys from his background make good coaches, managers, because he’s a guy that everybody trusted and liked to have on their club. They fought to have him on their club because of all the intangibles he brought and can still bring.
“He’s going to be a good manager. There’s no job beneath him. I don’t think he’ll change from the player he was. He was a guy that you liked having around. He’s inquisitive, he’s got a nice presentation. He’s a guy you’d love to see guys follow and emulate.
“The challenge is the first year you’re doing it is to try to not do too much. I think Brian has talked to him a lot about things. I’m going to talk to him a little bit at some point. I kind of look back when I was starting out at 28, 27 whatever it was. There’s some similarities there.”
The Orioles hired Bobby Rose as Delmarva’s hitting coach. Rose appeared in 73 games with the Angels from 1989-1992, but really made his mark in Japan by batting .325/.402/.531 in eight seasons.
“I scouted him and tried to get him to come back from Japan and play second base for the Diamondbacks,” Showalter said. “I was over there trying to steal Ichiro and (Hideki) Matsui and we looked at a lot of American players we were trying to get to come back over.
“You look at (Rose’s) numbers over there. He couldn’t afford to come back. That’s a really good addition for us. This guy loves to talk hitting. He’s very into hitting, so to speak. We were lucky to add him. He brings a pretty rich resume.”
Former Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts has been added to the broadcast crew at 105.7 The Fan. He’ll serve as an analyst on several games.