O's 7th-round pick, Matt Bywater, still open to signing

O's 7th-round pick, Matt Bywater, still open to signing
Pepperdine pitcher Matt Bywater, who was drafted in round seven by the Orioles, said he still could sign with the team, although it hasn't happened yet. "We are still in negotiations," Bywater, a 21-year-old lefty said this afternoon from his home in Thousand Oaks, California. "It's not a done deal on either side." When asked if he is still open to coming to terms with the club he said "completely open." I asked Bywater if the sides were close or far apart in their...
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A matchup of young guns: Arrieta vs. Hellickson

A matchup of young guns:  Arrieta vs. Hellickson
Here is the reason to watch and/or listen to today's Orioles-Tampa game. The contest features a matchup of the two of the best, young pitching prospects in the game. It's Jake Arrieta for Baltimore and Jeremy Hellickson for Tampa. Let's start with Hellickson. Entering this season, Baseball America ranked the 23-year-old righty as Tampa's number 2 prospect and number 18 in all of baseball. In their recent mid-season rating of the top 25 prospects in baseball at the mid-point he was...
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Shoppach with a Slam & a solo as Rays top the O's, 7-3

Shoppach with a Slam & a solo as Rays top the O's, 7-3
The Orioles sailed into the last of the fourth today with a 3-0 lead. But the game unraveled for the Birds and Brian Matusz when Tampa scored five runs in that inning and went on to beat the Birds, 7-3. The O's were batting .302 since Buck Showalter took over, but today were held to just four hits. There were 19 straight O's batters retired after an Adam Jones three-run homer in the third until a Matt Wieters double with one out in the ninth. The O's took a 3-0 lead in that third. After...
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Is Britton struggling?

Is Britton struggling?
There's a question no one needed to ask just a week or two ago. But now, after giving up five runs in just 3 2/3 in his last start, Zach Britton, the left-handed pitching prospect has an ERA of 5.71 over his past four Norfolk starts. He is 1-2, 3.57 overall in seven Triple-A starts over 35 1/3 innings. Britton had been pitching so well, that, even with this recent stretch, his ERA is still 2.09 over his last 13 starts between Double and Triple-A. He pitches tonight for the Tides at home...
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Jones homer notes

Jones homer notes
Adam Jones gave the Orioles a 3-0 lead with a three-run shot off the left field foul pole in the top of the third. It was Jones' 17th homer of the year. He is 1 for 2 today and is now batting .415 over his last 11 games at 17 for 41 with two homers and 8 RBI. He also has five doubles and a triple in that stretch. Jones had just one homer over his past 22 games until today's blast. He now has 51 RBI. Jones has hit 10 of his 17 homers on the road this year. He hit 8 homers in June and...
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Conley to Frederick

Conley to Frederick
Outfielder Brian Conley, a Gaithersburg, Maryland native and Towson University product, has been promoted from Delmarva to Frederick today. Conley, a 17th-round pick in 2008, is having his best professional season. In 98 games, he hit .270 with 16 doubles and 29 RBIs. The 24-year old ranks fourth in the South Atlantic League in on-base percentage (.393) and second in the league in walks (70). Conley was selected to the SAL All-Star Game. Recently, he was recognized as having the "Best...
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Erbe update

Erbe update
This will be a short update. A club official said Brandon Erbe's shoulder surgery yesterday "went well, better than expected." At this point, I don't have any further update but may have more later today, so check back here. Erbe has not pitched since a July 24th injury-rehab outing with Aberdeen. He was 0-10, 5.73 over 14 starts this year at Triple-A Norfolk. He was the O's third-round pick in 2005.
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At what point do O's consider long-term deal for Guthrie?

At what point do O's consider long-term deal for Guthrie?
O's pitcher Jeremy Guthrie is throwing so well now, that even on a night when he doesn't have his best command, he didn't give up a run. "I didn't have a great feel for any of my pitches and had to battle," Guthrie told reporters after pitching six innings of two-hit, shutout ball in Friday's win over Tampa. You wonder what he might have done if he felt good about how he was throwing? Guthrie continued his great second-half pitching in the win over the Rays and is 4-1, 1.51 over his...
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Guthrie golden again as O's shutout Tampa, 5-0

Guthrie golden again as O's shutout Tampa, 5-0
Despite facing the club with the second-best record in the Majors tonight, the O's good pitching continued and so did the winning. Jeremy Guthrie and two relievers teamed on a three-hitter in a 5-0 blanking of the Rays in St. Petersburg. It's the O's second shutout of the year. The Orioles are now 9-2 since Buck Showalter took over as manager, their best 11-game stretch since April of 2005. Guthrie gave up just two hits over six scoreless frames and one of those was a triple to left...
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Klein's bonus

Klein's bonus
According to Jim Callis of Baseball America, in a tweet tonight, Orioles third-round pick, UCLA pitcher Dan Klein, got a signing bonus of $499,900. That is more than most of the players taken late in the second round received. According to BA, it is the third highest bonus the O's have handed out so far. Fifth-round pick Conner Narron got $650,000 according to the publication and ninth-round pick, pitcher Parker Bridwell got $625,000. Narron played his first pro game this afternoon in the...
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Early offense vs. Shields

Early offense vs. Shields
Tampa pitcher James Shields, coming off that start in Toronto where he gave up nine hits and all nine went for extra bases, has allowed three extra-base hits to the Orioles in the first three innings tonight. The O's lead 3-0 on the strength of a three-run first inning. After Nick Markakis walked and was picked off, the rally began with two out and none on. Ty Wigginton hit a bloop single and Luke Scott lined a single to right. Adam Jones plated both runners on a triple to right. It was...
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Stats to take you into the Tampa series

Stats to take you into the Tampa series
Here are some facts, stats and notes to consider as the O's and Rays start a three-game weekend series tonight. The clubs played six times in the season's first nine games and have met just three times since. *The Birds are 2-1 on this six-game road trip and 16-41 on the year in road games. *The O's are 2-7 vs. Tampa and 10-35 vs. AL East clubs. The Rays are 27-17 vs. the East. *The O's are 8-2 with Buck Showalter as manager. They are 3-0 in series with Buck after going 4-28-2 in 34...
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Not tonight: O's fall short at Cleveland

Not tonight:  O's fall short at Cleveland
After sporting a team average of .308 and scoring 5.3 runs per game in the first nine games of the Buck Showalter era, Thursday night the O's offense got shutdown by a rookie right-hander and two relievers as Cleveland topped the O's 4-1. The Orioles are now 8-2 since Showalter took over and were denied their first three-game sweep at Cleveland since April of 1987. Jeanmar Gomez, the 22-year-old making just his fourth Major League start, held the Orioles to one run and six hits over six...
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A Q&A with Joe Jordan as the signing deadline nears

A Q&A with Joe Jordan as the signing deadline nears
As we head into the final weekend before the deadline at midnight Monday to sign picks from the First-Year Player Draft, the Orioles have come to terms with 34 of their 49 selections. They have agreed on deals with 10 of their 14 picks in the first 15 rounds. The four remaining unsigned among those picks include first-round selection, prep shortstop Manny Machado. They also have yet to agree with sixth-round pick, pitcher Dixon Anderson, seventh-round pick, pitcher Matthew Bywater and...
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Klein headed for Aberdeen

Klein headed for Aberdeen
O's third-round pick Dan Klein, the UCLA pitcher, is on his way to Baltimore for a physical and then is expected to join the Aberdeen IronBirds. Klein has been been throwing and keeping in good shape so it could be only the matter of a few days before he pitches in a game. The O's agreed to terms with Klein on a signing bonus last night after scouting director Joe Jordan met with Klein and his parents in California on Saturday. Meawhile, fifth-round pick, infielder Conner Narron and...
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The rare complete game

The rare complete game
The complete game has almost disappeared in Major League Baseball. Where Jim Palmer once had 25 complete games all by himself, in 1975, last night's two-hitter for Brad Bergesen was just the O's second route-going effort all year and the first to go nine innings. Kevin Millwood was credited with an eight-inning complete game on April 21 in a losing effort at Seattle. Bergesen needed just 102 pitches to get his CG and he got there by getting quick outs throughout the night. He needed just...
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O's close in on agreement with Klein

O's close in on agreement with Klein
The deal is not completely done, but the Orioles are closing in on an agreement with their third-round draft pick, UCLA pitcher Dan Klein. The 22-year-old Klein was a redshirt sophomore for the Bruins, who made the College World Series this year. He was the 85th overall selection in the draft. This season for the Bruins, Klein was 6-1, 1.90 and ten saves. Over 52 innings he gave up 39 hits with 11 walks, 55 strikeouts and a .204 batting average against. The Orioles have said they would...
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Bergy with two-hit gem as O's top Tribe, 3-1

Bergy with two-hit gem as O's top Tribe, 3-1
The Orioles have been getting solid work by their starting pitchers for manager Buck Showalter. Tonight's outing topped them all. Brad Bergesen pitched a complete-game two-hitter as the Orioles topped Cleveland 3-1. Bergesen, now 4-9, 5.84, threw just 102 pitches in recording his second career complete game. He pitched a five-hitter in topping Atlanta last June 14. He missed out on throwing the Orioles first one-hitter since Daniel Cabrera had one on September 28, 2006 in New York vs. the...
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Erbe headed for surgery

Erbe headed for surgery
O's pitching prospect Brandon Erbe will undergo shoulder surgery on Friday to repair a torn labrum. Erbe was seen by Dr. Lewis Yocum today, and as a result of that exam, Friday's surgery has been scheduled. They won't necessarily know the extent of the injury until the procedure or how much time Erbe will miss. The 22-year-old right-hander from Baltimore has not pitched since a July 24 injury-rehab start with Aberdeen and was on the road back to Triple-A when he was sent to...
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Another pitcher's duel? (updated)

Another pitcher's duel? (updated)
After last night, when these teams combined for 22 runs, one more than the O's and White Sox had combined to score during their entire four-game series, maybe the O's and Cleveland will return to a pitcher's duel tonight. The O's lead 2-0 after four on a Luke Scott RBI groundout in the first and a Cesar Izturis RBI single in the fourth. Brad Bergesen is off to a good start. The Indians do not yet have a hit and he has thrown just 42 pitches. He has gotten two double plays behind him...
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