Gonzalez talks about his outing in Aberdeen

Gonzalez talks about his outing in Aberdeen
O's lefty Michael Gonzalez pitched a 1-2-3, top of the sixth tonight here at Aberdeen, getting a strikeout and two groundouts. He threw 13 pitches, eight for strikes, in his seventh injury rehab performance. Gonzalez, whose fastball was clocked between 89 and 91 on the Ripken Stadium radar gun, felt quite good about his one-inning stint against the Lowell Spinners. Another gun reading had Gonzalez topping out at 94. "Every time I'm going out it feels a lot better, man. Breaking pitch is...
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Gonzo with a 1-2-3 inning

Gonzo with a 1-2-3 inning
Michael Gonzalez just retired the Lowell Spinners 1-2-3 in a quick top of the sixth. He threw 13 pitches, eight for strikes. Gonzalez struck out number three hitter, Boston's first-round draft pick, Kolbrin Vitek on a 2-2 pitch. Then he got Bryce Brentz, batting fourth on a high chopper to short and then got the number five batter to ground out to short as well. His fastball ranged from 89 to 91 on the gun here at Ripken Stadium.
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Gonzo comes on

Gonzo comes on
Michael Gonzalez is now warming up and will pitch for Aberdeen in the top of the sixth. The IronBirds still lead 3-0 and starter Justin Anderson gave up just three hits in five shutout innings.
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IronBirds grab early lead (updated)

IronBirds grab early lead (updated)
Aberdeen scored a first-inning run tonight and leads Lowell 1-0 through two innings here at Ripken Stadium. The IronBirds Austin Knight, who went to high school at Baltimore's Boys Latin, singled with one out. Kipp Schutz then hit a ground single to right and Knight went to third on a misplay by the right fielder. He scored on a passed ball for a 1-0 edge. Schutz began tonight leading the New York-Penn League in batting at .403 and now has nine hits over his last 14 at bats. Aberdeen...
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Tonight's plan for Gonzo

Tonight's plan for Gonzo
Lefty Michael Gonzalez, who will pitch here tonight at Aberdeen, will likely come into this game during the 6th or 7th inning. He is scheduled to follow starter Justin Anderson to the mound, unless Anderson gets knocked out early in the contest. Gonzalez could come in during an inning and will not necessarily enter for a clean inning at the start. This will be his third appearance at Aberdeen and his 7th on his injury-rehab assignment. He has allowed three runs on seven hits over 6 1/3...
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Hoes and Avery live on O's XTRA tonight (IronBirds lineup)

Hoes and Avery live on O's XTRA tonight (IronBirds lineup)
Be sure to check out O's XTRA tonight at 6:30 on MASN before the O's-Tigers game. L.J. Hoes and Xavier Avery of the Frederick Keys will be interviewed live on set by Jim and Rick. These are two young and up and coming prospects in the O's system. Avery is batting .286-3-39 with 20 steals. Hoes, who missed some time with an illness, is back now and batting .255-1-23. Both are holding their own as first-year players in the Carolina League at the age of just 20 years old. I am in the...
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Heading to Aberdeen tonight

Heading to Aberdeen tonight
I am looking forward to a trip to Ripken Stadium tonight to check in on the IronBirds and also to watch Michael Gonzalez make his 7th injury rehab appearance. Gonzalez is expected to pitch in relief tonight vs. the Lowell Spinners, a Red Sox affiliate. Gonzalez has pitched to an ERA of 4.27 in six games with the GCL O's, Aberdeen and Bowie. Over 6 1/3 innings he has allowed seven hits and three runs with no walks, seven strikeouts and two homers. Meanwhile, the IronBirds are 8-10 and have...
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Where in the Yard? (Updated w/Answer)

Where in the Yard? (Updated w/Answer)
Happy Fourth of July weekend O's fans! Hope you all had a great Fourth, as the O's finished up in Boston and head to Detroit for a three-game set against the Tigers. You know the drill: Take a look at the photo below and let me know what the item is and where it's located in or around Camden Yards. We'll continue to keep track of your points and announce another winner at the end of July, so don't forget to be the first one here in the Orioles Buzz each week to guess the 'Where in the...
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No problem with Wiggy as an All-Star

No problem with Wiggy as an All-Star
Ty Wigginton is headed to the All-Star game and I have absolutely no problem with that. To me, it came to three or four O's with a chance to make it. Jason Berken, Nick Markakis, Adam Jones and Wigginton. Berken may have been most deserving of all, but they just don't pick relievers that are not closers, so that just about eliminated him. For all the good stats Markakis has, the four homers and 27 RBI at the halfway point was just not enough production for him to make it. I know he is...
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Millwood's trade value is dropping

Millwood's trade value is dropping
When Kevin Millwood got off to a solid start this year pitching for the Orioles, that was good to see. It meant he was helping the club, but also boosting his trade value for the trade deadline. A lot has changed since then. Millwood is now struggling badly in the first inning of his starts and that's not the only inning that has been an issue for him. All the key numbers for him are very poor over his last seven starts, capped by his outing today when he gave up five runs in the first...
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Minor league notes on Welty, Mahoney, Hobgood, Mummey and more

Minor league notes on Welty, Mahoney, Hobgood, Mummey and more
One of the hottest bats right now in the O's minors belongs to Frederick Keys right fielder Ronnie Welty. He is batting .429-0-10 during an 11-game batting streak which has featured nine games of two hits or more. Welty has raised his average on the year from .247 to .279 with the hot streak. On the season, the O's 20th-round pick from 2008 is batting .279-9-46. The one stat that is glaring on his record is a whopping 95 strikeouts in 73 games and he leads the Carolina League in that...
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The kid is all right

The kid is all right
Some fans were critical when I wrote last week that Brian Matusz was doing just fine this year and that he was making progress. I wrote that he was holding up well as a young pitcher on the team with the worst record in baseball, especially given his lack of run support and his winless streak dating to April. Don't worry, I won't gloat after Matusz's outing on Sunday at Boston, but I do think I was correct in what I wrote after his last start before Sunday's game. The seven-inning outing...
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Matusz with a gem as O's top Boston, 6-1

Matusz with a gem as O's top Boston, 6-1
Brian Matusz continued his stellar pitching vs. the AL East today and provided the Orioles with a big lift as he pitched the Birds past Boston 6-1 in the series finale at Fenway Park. Matusz also ended a 13-start winless drought and won for the first time since April 18 vs. Oakland. Matusz allowed just two hits over seven innings. He walked three and tied his career-high with eight strikeouts as he threw 111 pitches. Matusz stranded two runners on base in the third and fourth innings. John...
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Encouraging Matusz stat

Encouraging Matusz stat
Watching Brian Matusz pitch out of that second and third, one-out jam in the fourth reminded me that Matusz has held his own this year when pitching versus AL East opponents. He has better numbers within the division than he has overall. Those are the teams he will need to pitch well against moving forward - those Beasts of the East. Coming into this start, Matusz is 1-3, 3.38 in seven starts in 2010 versus the East. He has an ERA of 3.86 in two earlier starts versus Boston. That's a...
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Samuel gets hot

Samuel gets hot
If there is one thing the O's fans like to see out of their team, manager, and players - besides say, wins - it's fire and passion. They got it last night from manager Juan Samuel, during and after the game. Samuel was ejected by home plate ump Mike Everitt in the last of the eighth of Boston's 9-3 win on Saturday. He seemed to tire of his pitchers not getting some strikes called, while Jon Lester was the benefactor of several close strikes. To me, it's part of a bigger picture where...
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Lester better again as Sox top O's

Lester better again as Sox top O's
For the Orioles, spotting Jon Lester a 4-0 lead in the first inning on Saturday made it look like it would be a long night. This time, looks were not deceiving. They got whipped 9-3 by Boston which has taken the first two games in this series and now leads the season series, 6 to 5. Lester gave up just five hits and one run over seven innings. He beat the Orioles again. He is 2-0 in three starts on the season vs. Baltimore and has given up just one run over 19 innings. Lester improved to...
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Down four early vs. Lester (Aberdeen note)

Down four early vs. Lester (Aberdeen note)
Maybe the Orioles have taken this come-from-behind to win thing too far. They spotted Jon Lester a 4-0 lead after one inning and now trail by that margin in the fourth inning at Fenway Park. Even the most loyal fan must be feeling like this one is lost already. The O's have not beaten Lester, who is 11-0, 2.06 in 14 career starts against them and came into this start having pitched 12 scoreless vs. Baltimore already this year. In six starts vs. the Birds since the start of last season,...
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Random takes on Jones, Britton and more

Random takes on Jones, Britton and more
*I am pretty sure this is not necessarily true, but the impression out there seems to be that Adam Jones is running the show and not the other way around. We read and hear things like "the O's met with Adam and asked him to play deeper in the field. They asked him to charge the ball more often." First of all you would hope Jones is taking these "suggestions" to heart, because he doesn't want to become known as the first Gold Glove winner to be considered completely mediocre on defense...
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Close to another minor league no-hitter

Close to another minor league no-hitter
The Orioles have had minor league no-hitters pitched this year by Norfolk's Chris Tillman in April and on Wednesday night by Nate Moreau in his Frederick Keys debut. Friday night, the Aberdeen IronBirds took a no-hitter into the last of the eighth of their game at Hudson Valley, but settled for a one-hitter and 5-0 win over the Renegades. Aberdeen starter Justin Moore, a 20-year-old right-hander, pitched six no-hit innings to get it started. He walked three and fanned two. Then Jason Gurka...
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Going, Going, Gonzo (updated)

Going, Going, Gonzo (updated)
Michael Gonzalez gave up a home run in his second straight injury rehab game, this time in Double-A Bowie. Gonzalez retired the first Akron batter he faced to end the fifth inning, but he served up a two-out homer in the sixth and came out of the game. He recorded two outs on fly balls and one on a grounder. Gonzalez surrendered a two-run homer against Brooklyn in his most recent appearance with short-season Single-A Aberdeen. Update: Felix Pie went 1-for-4 with a triple, walk and two...
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