Wrapping up a 10-9 loss

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles first baseman Chris Davis switched to designated hitter today to accommodate a sore right forearm and launched a three-run homer to left-center field. The bat is fine.

"I just had a little tightness in my forearm," Davis said after the Orioles' 10-9 loss to the Cardinals at Ed Smith Stadium. "I noticed it a few days ago. I think it's a combination of sleeping with my arm tucked up underneath me and not really being able to get it stretched out the next day. Just doing a lot of work early on, taking a lot of reps.

"I've never had arm issues, never had elbow issues. It doesn't seem like it's going to be a big deal. It's muscular, so I don't have to worry about any ligaments or tendons or anything like that. But just something I have to deal with and take it day by day.

"The swing feels good, though."

Manager Buck Showalter put Mark Trumbo at first base after watching Davis work out during batting practice.

"Didn't like the way his arm was working, throwing. Didn't bother him to hit," Showalter said.

Davis will restrict his baseball activities to hitting and fielding ground balls.

chris-davis-jog-white.jpg"I'm just going to have to regulate how many reps I'm taking, probably not throw for a couple days, just kind of give it time to calm down. Continue with treatment," he said.

"I felt 100 times better than I did yesterday, so I think just being able to stretch it out and kind of give it a little bit of rest is going to be good for it."

Davis' home run traveled to left-center field and gave the Orioles an 8-1 lead. It's always a positive sign when he's using the entire field instead of pulling every ball into the shift. Or watching it go past him over the plate.

"That felt good," he said. "I talked about this offseason and when I reported about how I wanted to be more aggressive this year, meaning more aggressive in the strike zone and obviously not just going up there and hacking at everything," Davis said.

"I feel like the at-bats that I've had so far have been maybe not the result I was looking for, but I feel like they're definitely headed in the right direction. I'm seeing a lot of pitches, attacking pitches that are in the strike zone or close to the strike zone. And it was good to let the ball travel a little bit today and put a good swing on it."

Showalter said Davis looks "a little more compact" with his swing.

"Today he had the two-handed swing working," Showalter said. "Stays on the ball a little longer. I think he was kind of favoring his elbow just a little bit. He said he was going to swing two-handed today, wanted to see how that felt. He did at times since he's been here."

Trey Mancini followed with a solo shot to left field, the last run scored by the Orioles.

"It's fun to watch him hit," Showalter said. "This guy came in here like he's trying to make the club. He's always trying to improve. It's fun to watch. I don't think he's ever going to get comfortable with success. He's a driven guy."

Manny Machado hit the first of the Orioles' four home runs today, a grand slam off Jack Flaherty in the third inning.

"It was one of those spring training offensive-friendly days," Showalter said. "Flaherty's one of the better young prospects in baseball. You can see why they're so high on him. But we strung together some things."

Mike Wright Jr. tossed two scoreless innings, allowing one hit and throwing 16 of 31 pitches for strikes.

"Mike stayed within himself," Showalter said. "You see him collect himself and get back in some counts and get some outs. It's a very hitter-friendly day, so anytime you put zeros up there, you're pitching pretty effectively."

Wright left on a high note by throwing only two innings, but it was more of a concession to the number of pitchers in camp. Thirty-seven at last count.

"We're going to have to give some of them two instead of three because we've just got too many pitchers," Showalter said. "It's something we've got to start attacking here shortly. Trust me. We're running into that period where guys are going to have to start getting stretched out."

Cuts won't be made over the next few days, according to Showalter.

Andrew Cashner will throw a two-inning simulated game Thursday morning on one of the back fields. Chris Tillman will do the same on Saturday. Cashner will go three innings in another sim game on March 6.

Dylan Bundy starts Friday against the Pirates in Sarasota and throws a four-inning simulated game on his next turn.

Third base coach Bobby Dickerson had a minor medical procedure today, which explains why Wayne Kirby replaced him and Butch Davis coached first base.

Pedro Álvarez went 0-for-2 today with a strikeout. He's making the trip Thursday to Clearwater.

The Orioles announced a new multi-year partnership with the United States Naval Academy that includes an Army-Navy baseball doubleheader for charity on March 25 and an exhibition game between the Orioles and another major league team at Max Bishop Stadium in Annapolis in March 2019. Read more about it here.

"That's something that's been in the works for a while," Showalter said. "That's exciting. That's something that I know ownership has been talking about for a while and this year we were finally able to put it together. It's great for Navy, great for Maryland and there's no downside. That's something that we're excited (about). I wish we could do it this year.

"Being able to play there and for them to come in and play at Camden, I wish I could get there for it. It's great. It's something we've been talking about for a while. I know Louis and John and Mr. Angelos have been working hard to try to make it happen, so congratulations to them."

Hays and Mullins head up improved outfield depth o...
Orioles to host Army-Navy doubleheader, play 2019 ...

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to https://www.masnsports.com/