O’s skipper Juan Samuel did not actually say the words that Brad Bergesen will be his starting pitcher on Saturday, but he did say Bergesen will join the team tomorrow.
I think it’s a pretty safe assumption at this point that Bergy takes the mound here Saturday at 4:05 p.m.
Samuel was asked about Bergesen returning so soon, after just two Triple-A outings this time when he went back, covering 7 2/3 innings.
“The report is he threw the ball okay in his starts and then his bullpen session was a lot better, very, very good. Out of the options that we’ve got, he’s the one guy that we think can slide right in and pitch for us (on Saturday).
“We played around with having Hendrickson go out there for four or five innings, but then you’d have all these (bullpen) guys going for one inning. If Bergy can come in and give you that, you still have Hendrickson to go out three or four if you need to.”
Bergesen allowed six runs over 2 1/3 in his last O’s start on June 2nd vs. the Mets. After that he went to the bullpen and then back to Triple-A.
Jake Fox makes his first start as an Oriole tonight, batting seventh as the DH. Even though he won’t play in the field tonight, Samuel likes the versatility Fox brings on the diamond.
“It always helps. We saw him catch last night and he’s taking ground balls at first base and is a guy we can throw into left field if we need to. I think he is one guy that if we decided to catch Tatum and DH Wieters, you still have someone that can go behind the plate.
“He has played third base also, but we are not looking at him to play a lot of third. We have Tejada there and and Moore could go there also.”
Samuel says he sees some progress in Adam Jones at the plate. Jones is 8 for 16 over his last four games and is batting .339 over his last 16 contests.
“When he is getting a good pitch to hit, a fastball, he is putting a good swing on it. He is getting better pitches to hit of late.”
Is he making any improvement in hitting the curve ball?
“Well, we still see him, you know, going out of the strike zone at times. But don’t forget, Adam Jones is still young. Those guys are learning how to hit.”
Meanwhile, as we wrote earlier, Koji Uehara had an impressive outing today pitching a simulated inning facing hitters here at Camden Yards. He could be activated as soon as Saturday.
But how will he hold up amidst the Baltimore heat? “We’re going to find out,” Samuel said with a laugh.
A couple of other pre-game notes:
*The Orioles have lost 11 in row vs. the Marlins.
*Kevin Millwood has allowed 18 runs in the first inning of his last six starts.
*Adam Jones is batting .346 in 14 interleague games and is tied for second in the AL with five homes vs. NL opponents.
*Miguel Tejada has just one RBI over his last 23 games and 99 at bats.
*The O’s team ERA is 6.10 in June, the highest in the Majors.