Ubaldo Jimenez pitches shutout ball in Fort Myers

CLEARWATER, Fla. - To no one's surprise, today's scheduled game at Bright House Field between the Orioles and Phillies has been rained out. It will not be made up.

The Orioles team did bus up here, get set up in their clubhouse and now they will shortly head south back to Sarasota. Nothing to see here, but a few things to report from a session with manager Buck Showalter.

The Orioles decision to send right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez to Fort Myers was the right one. They did get that game in today there. Jimenez threw well and got his work in against Red Sox minor leaguers.

Jimenez went 3 2/3 innings, allowing two hits and no runs with two walks and seven strikeouts. He threw 66 pitches.

The Orioles sent Scott McGregor from their minor league staff to watch Jimenez and he reported back on his outing to O's pitching coach Dave Wallace.

"Good, went great," Wallace said. "Scotty said he pitched very well. Had command of all his pitches. Very good outing for him."

Jimenez had pitched two innings in each of his first two Orioles' exhibition starts, throwing two perfect innings in the first start and he gave up four runs and four hits last Wednesday against the Phillies.

"He threw the ball well today. Scotty is a hard grader. Said he was throwing 92, 93 and was really into it to. That's a good sign," Showalter added.

Showalter said yesterday it was a priority for the club today to get Jimenez on the mound and get his innings in.

Mission accomplished.

Showalter believes Jimenez will be stretched out enough by the end of spring training to pitch at least seven innings in his first regular season start.

Brian Matusz and Kevin Gausman, who were scheduled to pitch here today, now could possibly pitch in tonight's game in Sarasota against the Twins. The final decision has not been made but it is also possible, and probably more likely, that both would pitch tomorrow in minor league games at Twin Lakes Park. When reporters left the O's clubhouse earlier, the final call on that had not been made.


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