Not forgettin' Britton

Not forgettin' Britton
Remember the great Brian Matusz debate last season? President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail kept insisting that Matusz wouldn't make his major league debut in 2009, that the left-hander would eventually be shut down after Double-A Bowie completed its season. You know the rest. Brad Bergesen took a Billy Butler line drive off his left shin on July 30, Orioles scouts insisted that Matusz was ready, and MacPhail finally relented. Zach Britton isn't getting the same early treatment....
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Tonight's lineups (w/Gonzo update)

Tonight's lineups (w/Gonzo update)
For the Orioles: LF Corey Patterson 3B Miguel Tejada RF Nick Markakis 1B Ty Wigginton CF Adam Jones C Matt Wieters DH Josh Bell 2B Julio Lugo SS Cesar Izturis RHP Brad Bergesen For the Red Sox: SS Marco Scutaro LF Eric Patterson DH David Ortiz 1B Kevin Youkilis 3B Adrian Beltre RF J.D. Drew 2B Bill Hall CF Mike Cameron C Kevin Cash RHP Tim Wakefield Gonzo update: Left-hander Michael Gonzalez reported to Double-A Bowie and will pitch in relief tonight as part of his injury rehab...
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J.J. back on the bump

J.J. back on the bump
Reliever Jim Johnson is scheduled to throw off a mound tomorrow at the minor league complex in Sarasota. Johnson had been shut down temporarily after experiencing soreness in his right elbow. Also, second baseman Brian Roberts' light baseball activites have increased to where he's taking batting practice again. Roberts has reached this point before and suffered a variety of setbacks.
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Did you know...

Did you know...
Since B.J. Ryan allowed a three-run walk-off homer to David Ortiz on June 2, 2005, the Orioles are 9-34 at Fenway Park and have lost 15 of their last 17 games on Yawkey Way. Ty Wigginton hit his 14th home run Wednesday and his first as a first baseman. According to Elias, Wigginton is the only player in the major leagues to homer while playing three different infield positions this year (11 as a second baseman and two as a third baseman). Kevin Millwood (June 19 and 24) and Jake Arrieta (June...
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The defense rests

The defense rests
I devoted my final entry last night to the Orioles' defense. I hope it didn't contain any errors. I recall a time when the organization stressed tightening up the defense to assist the young starting pitchers. Just using last night as an example, you've got center fielder Corey Patterson in left, rookie work-in-progress Josh Bell at third, corner infielder Scott Moore at second and third baseman Ty Wigginton at first. Most nights, shortstop Miguel Tejada starts at third. We've seen...
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Post-game Samuel

Post-game Samuel
The Orioles were charged with two errors tonight, but they failed to make plays all over the field. "There's no doubt that we do have to pick it up defensively," interim manager Juan Samuel said. "We have been able to overcome those mistakes the last few days, but most of the time it's not going to happen. Anytime you give the opposing club four or five outs, those kinds of things are going to happen. We do need to play all-around solid baseball if we're going to continue to make...
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Two pitching lines (& Bell's first hit)

Two pitching lines (& Bell's first hit)
Josh Bell lined a 2-0 fastball from Trevor Cahill into left field in the seventh inning for his first major league hit. The Orioles retrieved the ball for him. Jake Arrieta went six innings tonight and turned in a quality start by definition. Three of the four runs he allowed were earned. Arrieta gave up seven hits, walked four and struck out two. He threw 99 pitches, 55 for strikes. That's an improvement over his last two starts, when he allowed 10 earned runs (12 total) and 13 hits over...
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Bell's first blunder (updated)

Bell's first blunder (updated)
Josh Bell's first major league game has included his first error. Bell made a sliding stop of Kevin Kouzmanoff's shot near the line in the fifth inning, but his throw pulled first baseman Ty Wigginton off the bag. Wigginton was charged with an error earlier in the inning, and the Orioles failed to turn a double play on Kurt Suzuki's grounder to Cesar Izturis. Bell swung at the first pitch he saw in the bottom of the fifth, a changeup, and bounced to first baseman Adam Rosales. Rosales...
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Bell's debut

Bell's debut
Josh Bell took his first swings as a major leaguer with two outs in the bottom of the second inning. We'll always remember where we were on this momentous occasion. Bell took two outside pitches from Athletics starter Trevor Cahill. He fouled off a 91 mph fastball, took a 93 mph fastball that missed outside to run the count to 3-1, and chopped a 91 mph fastball to second baseman Mark Ellis. The Orioles immediately optioned him back to Triple-A Norfolk and recalled Felix Pie from his rehab...
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First update (w/1st & 2nd updates)

First update (w/1st & 2nd updates)
Nick Markakis flied to the warning track in center field to score Corey Patterson, who led off with a double, and give the Orioles a quick 1-0 lead. Jake Arrieta needed only nine pitches to complete the top of the first. Update: Former Oriole Jack Cust doubled to score Ryan Sweeney in the top of the second and tie the game, 1-1. Update II: Patterson has misplayed another ball in left field, getting a late jump on Cliff Pennington's drive, turning the wrong way and falling down as two runs...
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MacPhail on interviews

MacPhail on interviews
President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail had a busy day, dealing with Luke Scott's placement on the disabled list and corresponding roster move, and interviewing two candidates for the full-time managerial position. Though he wouldn't confirm the names, MacPhail met with Eric Wedge (again) and Rick Dempsey. "We had two interviews," he said. "As always, they are informative and insightful. It's an interesting process, not one you want to go through on a regular basis. It's an...
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MacPhail on Bell

MacPhail on Bell
President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail intended to activate Felix Pie from the disabled list as Luke Scott's replacement on the 25-man roster, but he received feedback that suggested Pie needed a little more time in the outfield and at the plate. Welcome to the majors, Josh Bell. "Once (Pie) gets here, he's going to get thrown into the lineup and we need to get him to where he can be ready to hit and contribute right from the start," MacPhail said. "He really didn't have much of...
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Dempsey interviews; More on Bell

Dempsey interviews; More on Bell
Rick Dempsey spent two hours at Peter Angelos' law office interviewing for the manager's job. President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail and General Counsel Russell Smouse attended the interview. Angelos was not there. "I thoroughly enjoyed it," said Dempsey, a former catcher and coach with the Orioles who currently serves as a MASN analyst. "It was a simple process with good questions, and I thought I answered them as well as I could." Dempsey, who has interviewed on three...
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Bell's in the lineup

Bell's in the lineup
Corey Patterson LF Miguel Tejada DH Nick Markakis RF Ty Wigginton 1B Adam Jones CF Matt Wieters C Josh Bell 3B Scott Moore 2B Cesar Izturis SS Jake Arrieta RHP
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Bell tolls in Baltimore

Bell tolls in Baltimore
The Orioles decided to keep Felix Pie on his injury rehab assignment and recall third baseman Josh Bell from Triple-A Norfolk. Bell replaces Luke Scott, who goes on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring. Bell batted .266 with 24 doubles, 10 homers and 44 RBIs in 74 games with the Tides. He hit .274 this month, with nine doubles, four homers, 19 RBIs and a 500 slugging percentage. He homered twice and drove in six runs on Tuesday. Remember when we debated whether we'd see...
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Touch 'em all

Touch 'em all
It's another beautiful day, and my last one before the Orioles embark on a long road trip, followed by the All-Star break. That's my break. Luke Scott will be re-evaluated today, but he sure sounds like a guy who expects to go on the disabled list. What lesson did we learn last night, kids? Never run hard. OK, not really. Felix Pie drove from Bowie to Camden Yards late last night. I'm told that he makes the same trip after every rehab game with an in-state affiliate - he wasn't...
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Scott to be evaluated tomorrow (& former Oriole traded)

Scott to be evaluated tomorrow (& former Oriole traded)
The Orioles will wait until tomorrow to make a decision on Luke Scott, who strained his left hamstring while rounding first base on his home run in the seventh inning. "We'll evaluate Luke tomorrow and see how he shows up here and we'll go from there," said interim manager Juan Samuel. "I think he thought that ball was not going to be out. He was thinking if that ball hits the wall, he was trying to get a triple out of it. He was trying to get to third base, and once he hit first base,...
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Deep thoughts

Deep thoughts
Miguel Tejada hit the Orioles' fifth home run tonight, tying their season high set May 1 against Boston. He did it with gusto. Tejada crushed a 2-1 pitch from the latest Oakland victim, Tyson Ross, in the bottom of the eighth inning, and he enjoyed all 384 feet of it. He flipped his bat before leaving the box, and he practically sprinted around the bases. Maybe he was just showing off for Luke Scott. It's been a bad night for Tejada, but that one swing made him feel a whole lot better. It...
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Homer and hurt (w/Pie update)

Homer and hurt (w/Pie update)
Luke Scott just broke a 6-6 tie by following Ty Wigginton's home run with one of his own, a shot to left-center field off reliever Cedrick Bowers. Scott barely made it to the plate. He appeared to injure his left hamstring as he rounded first base and hobbled the rest of the way, almost coming to a full stop at third. Scott pointed to the heavens as he crossed the plate, bringing a louder ovation from the crowd. Now that's dramatic. I can't recall seeing anything like it. Kirk Gibson...
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He's baaack (w/game update)

He's baaack (w/game update)
Game update: We finally have a home run from a first baseman! Ty Wigginton just launched a two-run shot off Oakland reliever Brad Ziegler in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game, 2-2. That's Wigginton's first homer since May 22. We also have a Matt Albers sighting. Albers replaced Mark Hendrickson in the seventh inning after Daric Barton's leadoff single, his first appearance since June 24. He retired Conor Jackson on a ground ball before walking Kurt Suzuki. Kevin Kouzmanoff followed...
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