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Brooks Robinson hospitalized, releases statement

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson was hospitalized earlier today, which always brings a wave of concern - and maybe panic - over all of us, but he released a statement saying he’s doing fine and it’s not related to his cancer surgery. Here’s the statement: “Thank you for your outpouring of concern. I was originally scheduled for a routine outpatient procedure

Opening night lineup (and note)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - The Orioles’ lineup for tomorrow night’s regular-season opener against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field should look pretty familiar to you, with one exception. Adam Jones moves up ahead of Luke Scott against left-hander David Price. Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Derrek Lee 1B Vladimir Guerrero DH Adam Jones CF Luke Scott LF Mark Reynolds 3B Matt Wieters C

Pre-workout Showalter - Part II

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - We can still hear thunder rumbling outside the dome. I’m just relieved the roof hasn’t collapsed. Speaking of thunderous echos, the Orioles are taking batting practice while I file this blog entry. Nick Markakis is knocking the paint off a few of the seats in right field. Luke Scott just bounced a ball off the back of the restaurant roof directly

Pre-workout Showalter - Part I

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter won’t post his opening night lineup until after today’s workout, but he told reporters not to expect any surprises. I’d assume that means he’s using the same lineup that we saw at the end of the exhibition schedule: Roberts, Markakis, Lee, Guerrero, Scott, Jones, Reynolds, Wieters and Hardy. I’ll pass along the official one later. Showalter explained why

Bergesen talks about role

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Brad Bergesen is “a candidate” to start the April 10 game against the Rangers at Camden Yards, according to manager Buck Showalter. Not necessarily the leading candidate. Just a candidate. Showalter is hesitant to name Bergesen the starter until making sure the Orioles aren’t rained out Monday for their home-opener against the Tigers. Bergesen talked about being in the bullpen to

Talking Tillman and Rays lineup

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - I drove through the worst rainstorm of my life to get here. Those tornado warnings are no joke. I was gripping the steering wheel so tightly, it’s almost bent in half. Good luck with that one, Avis. I was pretty sure a traffic light turned green, but I couldn’t move. Visibility was at an all-time low. But at least the water

Duchscherer shut down again

SARASOTA, Fla. - One last report from Sarasota. Pitcher Justin Duchscherer was sent to a chiropractor yesterday after complaining of back soreness. Apparently, his left hip is fine, but he’s dealing with another setback. President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail said the club will wait 24 hours “and see how it is.” “I’m not sure where we are right now,” MacPhail said. “I think we’re

Sarasota in the rear view mirror (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Counted among the yearly traditions of spring training is the sudden realization that I can’t consume all of the food that I bought during my seven-week stay. How many packets of oatmeal can I possibly eat before check-out this morning? And honesty, the bags of frozen broccoli and Brussels sprouts seemed like a good idea at the time. No way they’re coming

Tillman named No. 3 starter

SARASOTA, Fla. - Right-hander Chris Tillman will start Sunday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field, following Jeremy Guthrie and Brian Matusz in the rotation. Tillman went 2-0 with a 3.93 ERA in five games this spring. He allowed 20 hits, walked nine and struck out 10 in 18 1/3 innings. He also gave up one run over six innings in a minor

Showalter not ready to name No. 3 starter or closer (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter ventured into the press box to meet with reporters while the minor league game continued on the Ed Smith Stadium field. Showalter still hasn’t named his No. 3 starter. He wants to wait until head athletic trainer Richie Bancells checks on Brad Bergesen. Showalter said he didn’t expect the Orioles to add anyone from outside the organization, but

Matusz: “I feel like I’m 100 percent ready for the season”

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brian Matusz threw 35-40 pitches in the bullpen this morning and didn’t feel any discomfort in his left biceps. He remains scheduled to take the ball Saturday night against the Rays at Tropicana Field, making him the No. 2 starter in the rotation. Chris Tillman said he hasn’t been told whether he’s starting the third game, but he’s headed to manager Buck

VandenHurk clears waivers, Matusz starting Saturday

SARASOTA, Fla. - Rick VandenHurk cleared waivers and remains in the organization. He’s in uniform for today’s minor league game. VandenHurk had control issues that knocked him out of the running for a rotation or bullpen slot. He’ll be outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk and join a rotation that includes Zach Britton and Ryan Drese. VandenHurk allowed 12 runs (nine earned) and 10 hits, with eight

Weaver and Showalter a first-pitch battery

SARASOTA, Fla. - Hall of Fame manager Earl Weaver will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before the April 4 home opener at Camden Yards. Current manager Buck Showalter will catch it. I love the idea. And it seems appropriate, given the excitement that greeted Showalter’s arrival in Baltimore last August and the frequent comparisons to Weaver. Showalter invited Weaver to speak to his coaches

One more game in Sarasota

SARASOTA, Fla. - Enjoy that dateline while you can, because it changes starting tomorrow. The Orioles will break camp later today. Naturally, manager Buck Showalter scheduled a simulated game first. I almost expect Craig Tatum to hit off a tee tomorrow in between his wife’s contractions. A group of minor leaguers will take a bus to Ed Smith Stadium, then take their swings against Brad

Only a few decisions remain

SARASOTA, Fla. - Senior citizens were invited to run the bases after today’s 7-4 loss to the Blue Jays. Brady Anderson walked past me on the field and asked whether I was going to run. Ouch. Manager Buck Showalter basically has two decisions remaining before the Orioles break camp and head to St. Petersburg for Thursday’s workout. Showalter must decide whether Chris Tillman or Brad

Britton talks about being optioned

SARASOTA, Fla. - Zach Britton said he wasn’t surprised when he was called into manager Buck Showalter’s office and told that he had been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk. “Right when they called me in, I figured, ‘Hey you were either making the team or not making the team.’ I was leaning toward not making the team, so I expected it,” he said. What will he

Lee: “I’m ready to go for opening day”

SARASOTA, Fla. - Josh Rupe gave up his first two earned runs of the spring in the seventh inning, and the Blue Jays took a 5-4 lead. Former Orioles farmhand Mike McCoy drove in the go-ahead run. Robert Andino made a dazzling play at second base, backhanding a ball in front of the bag and making an off-balance throw as his momentum carried him toward

Another game update, Showalter on health (and note)

SARASOTA, Fla. - My eyes weren’t deceiving me. Blue Jays manager John Farrell ordered an intentional walk to Vladimir Guerrero in the fourth inning with runners on second and third and two outs. In a spring training game. Luke Scott was robbed of a hit on a diving stop by second baseman Aaron Hill. Michael Gonzalez struck out two in a scoreless fourth inning, throwing

Game update, Showalter on Sarasota

SARASOTA, Fla. - Derrek Lee picked up his first RBI of the spring, in the final exhibition game. He lined a single into center field off Blue Jays left-hander Brett Cecil (Maryland) with two outs in the second inning to score Brian Roberts and give the Orioles a 4-3 lead. Matt Wieters doubled to score Adam Jones, who reached on a bunt single, and he

Duchscherer officially on disabled list (and more)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Another domino fell in Orioles camp today when they placed pitcher Justin Duchscherer on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hip. We knew it was coming. Now it’s official. Duchscherer threw two innings in yesterday’s simulated game against six minor league hitters. The Orioles are hoping that he’ll be ready to pitch on April 21 against the Twins at Camden

Three more cuts coming today (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles will make three more cuts after batting practice, though they could adjust the roster if Brad Bergesen experiences a setback tomorrow. Bergesen and Jake Arrieta will face minor league hitters tomorrow at Ed Smith Stadium. Bergesen could get Sunday’s start against the Rays at Tropicana Field if he makes it through the game without a hitch. Backup catcher Craig Tatum

Notes on Bergesen, Britton and Rupe

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen is receiving treatment today on his right arm, but he isn’t scheduled to throw. He’s supposed to pitch tomorrow. The question is where. Bergesen could head over to Twin Lakes Park. The Orioles could arrange an intrasquad game at Ed Smith Stadium. We should know more later today. Bergesen said his arm feels good after being hit Friday by a

Matusz’s update and lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brian Matusz won’t throw today after being hit on the left biceps during yesterday’s simulated game. He’s wearing an ice pack on his arm to reduce the inflammation, but he told reporters this morning that there’s only a small bruise. No pain that should keep him from pitching Saturday. Matusz is hoping to throw tomorrow, as long as the inflammation stays down.

Final thoughts on 14-9 victory

SARASOTA, Fla. - They also played a game here today. The Orioles gave up six runs in the top of the ninth, but held on for a 14-9 win over the Tigers before 7,621, the 10th sellout at Ed Smith Stadium this spring. Ryohei Tanaka was charged with six runs in one-third of an inning. Brandon Cooney got the last two outs, though he gave

Matusz remains optimistic

SARASOTA, Fla. - So, anything going on today? Brian Matusz has a pressure pad on his left biceps to reduce the swelling after an LJ Hoes line drive slammed off his arm during today’s simulated game on Field No. 4. Matusz was working his second inning. He was supposed to get up six or seven times to increase his pitch count, but fate intervened again.

Matusz struck by line drive in simulated game

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles pitcher Brian Matusz was hit by a line drive on the left biceps in the second inning of today’s simulated game at the Ed Smith Stadium complex. X-rays have not been scheduled, but the left-hander’s status for the second game of the regular season against the Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla., is unknown. Manager Buck Showalter told reporters that Matusz threw

Britton on Britton

SARASOTA, Fla. - Left-hander Zach Britton knows what’s coming. It isn’t necessarily fair, but he’s heard enough chatter to know that he’s going to be optioned to Triple-A Norfolk. Britton talked about today’s outing, and eventually, the likelihood that he’ll begin the season in the minors. “In the fourth inning, I was trying to do a little bit too much, but I was happy to

Last look at Britton

SARASOTA, Fla. - Left-hander Zach Britton is expected to be optioned to Triple-A Norfolk after today’s game. If so, he’ll leave camp having allowed three runs in 20 official spring innings. Britton gave up two runs and eight hits in six innings today, walking one and striking out four. The Orioles lead the Tigers, 13-2, heading to the top of the seventh inning. Britton threw

Looking back at roster (corrected)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Nick Markakis just doubled off Tigers reliever Enrique Gonzalez in the third inning to drive in two more runs and complete the line for starter Max Scherzer. Scherzer is charged with 12 runs, 11 earned, in 2 1/3 innings. Vladimir Guerrero followed with his second single and RBI. Orioles 13, Tigers 0. Luke Scott struck out to end the inning. Bench him.

Scott’s slam (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Luke Scott kept fouling off pitches from Tigers starter Max Scherzer in the first inning. Adding to the drama - the bases were loaded. Scott finally got hold of a ball that didn’t slam against the screen behind him, and he drove it over the left field fence for a grand slam and a 4-0 lead. Scott has endured a terrible spring

Leftover notes and quotes

SARASOTA, Fla. - We’re ready for today’s game, which seems like the least important thing happening in camp today. The Orioles added a bunch of minor leaguers, including Jeff Fiorentino, Rhyne Hughes and Blake Davis. Here are some leftover pregame quotes from manager Buck Showalter: On starting the year with one lefty reliever: “It’s not the conventional, but .... with so many young pitchers in

Bergesen, more notes and Tigers lineup (corrected)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen said he threw about 30 pitches off a bullpen mound today and is scheduled to pitch one or two innings on Wednesday. He’s not sure whether that will take place at Twin Lakes Park or during the workout at the Ed Smith Stadium complex. “I threw all my pitches, regular bullpen, and I felt good,” he said. “The plan is

Reimold optioned to Triple-A Norfolk

SARASOTA, Fla. - Outfielder Nolan Reimold was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk this morning, so you can add his name to the list of roster cuts. Reimold batted .315 with three doubles, three homers, 10 RBIs, a .448 on-base percentage and a .537 slugging percentage. Felix Pie made the team over Reimold, as expected. He’s out of options and he’s the backup center fielder. Pie is

Today’s lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - The sun is shining here and it looks like we’ll play. For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Derrek Lee 1B Vladimir Guerrero DH Luke Scott LF Adam Jones CF Mark Reynolds 3B Jake Fox C J.J. Hardy SS Zach Britton LHP I should have added in my last post that Mark Hendrickson has been given 48 hours to find

Hendrickson and Rapada cut, Gonzalez only left-handed reliever

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles should have their camp roster down to 27 or 28 by the end of the day, and it won’t include two left-handed relief candidates. Mark Hendrickson and Clay Rapada are counted among today’s cuts. Hendrickson can seek a major league job and decline an assignment to Triple-A Norfolk. Those moves leave Michael Gonzalez as the only left-hander in the bullpen

Cuts have started (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - We had thunderstorms overnight and the fields are soaked. No idea whether the Orioles will play today, since the forecast today calls for more rain. It’s clearing right now - I see blue sky - but that could change. Still no lineup posted, but David Riske, Rick VandenHurk and Randy Winn have been eliminated from the camp roster. More cuts are coming,

Final thoughts on 4-3 victory

SARASOTA, Fla. - Michael Gonzalez breezed through the ninth inning to record the save in the Orioles’ 4-3 victory over the Red Sox at sold-out Ed Smith Stadium. Manager Buck Showalter said he contacted Terry Francona before the game, after learning that the Boston manager was aggravated by his comments about general manager Theo Epstein that appear in the April edition of Men’s Journal. “I

Tillman on Tillman

SARASOTA, Fla. - Kevin Gregg allowed a hit and walk and struck out a batter in one scoreless inning. Matt Wieters’ two-run single in the bottom of the eighth tied the game, 3-3, and Ryan Adams followed with a single to give the Orioles a 4-3 lead. Chris Tillman told reporters that he’s changed his delivery in the later days of camp, which is interesting

Tillman’s day (and Uehara’s)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Chris Tillman threw 103 pitches in 5 2/3 innings today, leaving with two Boston runners on base after he got ahead of Paul Hoover, 0-2, and walked him. Tillman allowed three runs and six hits, with four walks and three strikeouts. He hit David Ortiz to lead off the sixth. That’s a lot of pitches in fewer than six complete innings, and

Checking on Guthrie (and updating Tillman)

SARASOTA, Fla. - While the Orioles are playing the Red Sox today at Ed Smith Stadium, Jeremy Guthrie is making his final exhibition start against the Blue Jays in Dunedin. According to the box score, Guthrie has allowed four runs and eight hits in three innings, with one walk, one strikeout, one wild pitch and one hit batter. The Sun’s Dan Connolly tweets that Guthrie

Tillman through the third (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Chris Tillman isn’t making the boldest statement that he should be included in the opening night rotation. Tillman has allowed two runs, on J.D. Drew’s wind-aided homer to left, and four hits. He’s also walked three batters and struck out two. Tillman has thrown 51 pitches, 31 for strikes. It looks like his fastball is topping out at 90 mph. Matt Wieters

Bergesen throws, Francona vents

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen threw from 60 and 120 feet on flat ground today. He’s scheduled to throw a bullpen session tomorrow if the discomfort doesn’t return, and he could start Tuesday’s exhibition finale against the Blue Jays in Sarasota. “Everything felt OK,” he said. “A little tight, a little tender, but it’s nothing I can’t throw through. I think right now the plan

Bergesen ready to play catch (with Red Sox lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen isn’t sure when he’ll get back on a mound or pitch in a game. He’s just taking it one day at a time, cliché and all. That’s the only approach when dealing with a bruised forearm. “It’s feeling better,” he said this morning. “It’s still obviously there. It’s tender and sore, but it’s getting better by the day. Today’s plan

Orioles lineups (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles are playing split-squad games against the Red Sox at home and the Blue Jays in Dunedin. I’m staying here to watch Chris Tillman pitch. You can watch him on MASN. For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Derrek Lee 1B Vladimir Guerrero DH Luke Scott LF Adam Jones CF Mark Reynolds 3B Matt Wieters C J.J. Hardy SS

Final thoughts on 7-2 victory

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - David Riske covered the last two innings for the Orioles, retiring all six batters he faced and striking out three to seal a 7-2 victory over the Rays at Charlotte Sports Park. The bullpen brought it strong today with six scoreless innings, including two each from Jason Berken and Josh Rupe. The unit allowed three hits, didn’t issue a walk and

Hardy hardly a disappointment

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - The Orioles wanted an offensive upgrade at shortstop. They got it. I know it’s only spring training, but J.J. Hardy is batting .388 after going 3-for-4 today. He singled twice, doubled and knocked in two runs, and the Orioles are taking a 7-2 lead over the Rays into the bottom of the eighth inning. Hardy has two homers and 10 RBIs

Drese on Drese (updated)

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Jason Berken threw two scoreless innings, retiring the last five batters he faced. He allowed two hits and struck out three. Josh Rupe followed with a 1-2-3 sixth inning. He’s allowed two unearned runs and seven hits in 12 2/3 innings. J.J. Hardy is 2-for-3 with an RBI double. Brian Roberts is 2-for-3 with a home run and a walk. Update:

Drese done for day (updated)

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Jason Berken is pitching the fourth inning with Tampa Bay leading the Orioles, 2-1. Ryan Drese allowed two runs and five hits in three innings, with no walks, two strikeouts and one visit from head athletic trainer Richie Bancells. Drese threw 43 pitches, including 27 for strikes. Drese allowed one run and four hits in his first three appearances covering seven

No interest in Davis, early Showalter (updated)

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - The Orioles sent a scout to watch left-hander Doug Davis audition for teams Thursday in Arizona, but they have no interest in signing him. Team officials are encouraged by Justin Duchscherer’s progress and currently believe they have enough internal pitching options. Brad Bergesen’s bruised right forearm isn’t a major concern. The Orioles must set their opening night roster by 4 p.m.

Quick hits

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter was relieved to discover only minimal swelling in Brad Bergesen’s right arm this morning. Showalter is hopeful that Bergesen can pitch Tuesday on three days’ rest. It’s feasible if Bergesen’s arm allows it because he threw only four pitches yesterday. Justin Duchscherer will stay back at extended spring training after the Orioles break camp. He’s scheduled to pitch

Orioles lineup (with travel roster note)

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - The Orioles apparently brought their opening night lineup to Charlotte Sports Park, with the exception of Felix Pie starting in center field over Adam Jones, who didn’t make the trip after playing yesterday in Fort Myers. For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Derrek Lee 1B Vladimir Guerrero DH Luke Scott LF Mark Reynolds 3B Matt Wieters C Felix

Bergesen won’t throw today (with Rays lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles pitcher Brad Bergesen said his right forearm feels “a little stiff this morning” after being hit by a Denard Span line drive yesterday afternoon. “I’ll keep icing it today to keep the swelling down,” he said. Treatment will be the only activity for Bergesen today. “I will not throw today,” he said, “but I’ll hopefully play catch tomorrow and we’ll just

Postgame Showalter

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter touched on a variety of topics, including Brad Bergesen, Chris George and Jake Fox, following today’s 6-5 loss to the Twins. Take note of how Showalter refers to George, who threw 3 2/3 scoreless innings today and still hasn’t allowed a run, as being a starter or reliever “down there,” which should answer any questions about the left-hander’s

Bergesen: “It was a no-hitter”

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Brad Bergesen pretty much lost a start today. At least he’s retained a sense of humor. Bergesen was able to joke with reporters a few minutes ago after returning from a local hospital, where X-rays taken on his right arm were negative. Denard Span’s line drive nailed Bergesen on top of his right forearm, exactly halfway between his wrist and elbow.

Bergesen has bruised arm (with game and X-ray update)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Brad Bergesen suffered a right forearm contusion after being struck by Denard Span’s line drive in the bottom of the first inning. Bergesen was taken to a local hospital for X-rays, but the initial report is encouraging. The ball appeared to hit Bergesen on the top of his forearm near the elbow. The bad news for Bergesen, of course, is he

Bergesen hit on arm, leaves game (with game update)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Brad Bergesen had to leave today’s game after four pitches when Denard Span’s line drive crashed into his right arm. Bergesen jumped off the mound in obvious pain. The ball popped straight up in the air, and second baseman Robert Andino made the catch for the first out. Double-A trainer Pat Wesley raced out of the dugout, and Bergesen kept bending

Quick hits

FORT MYERS, Fla. - We’re almost ready for the anthem and the first pitch here at Hammond Stadium in sunny Fort Myers. Actually, it’s starting so I have to stop typing. OK, I’m back. Justin Duchscherer had another successful bullpen session today and is slated to throw two innings Monday in a minor league game. “That’s the best I’ve seen him throw,” manager Buck Showalter

Bergesen needs to be brilliant

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Is this a big start for Brad Bergesen? Is Florida full of palm trees, geckos and strip malls? Bergesen hasn’t been named to the starting rotation. We’re only sure that Jeremy Guthrie is pitching in the April 1 opener and Brian Matusz will take the ball on the following night. Manager Buck Showalter hasn’t officially named Jake Arrieta as the No.

Today’s lineup (and Twins)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - I’m back at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers for today’s game against the Twins. This is my last trip here in 2011. I’m wiping away the tears and passing along today’s lineup. For the Orioles: Robert Andino 2B Felix Pie LF Adam Jones CF Matt Wieters DH Jake Fox C Nolan Reimold RF Brendan Harris 1B Nick Green 3B Cesar Izturis

Final thoughts on O’s 11-7 victory

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Pirates scored the last two runs on Josh Rodriguez’s homer off left-hander Mark Hendrickson in the ninth inning. Too little, too late. Orioles 11, Pirates 7. The Orioles didn’t announce any more cuts tonight, but you can probably figure out which veterans have been informed that they’re not going to make the team. Here are some postgame comments from manager Buck

Arrieta on his outing (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jake Arrieta said he got “in a zone” after the first inning today after starting out “real sloppy.” “I threw a lot of good pitches to (Andrew) McCutchen,” he said. “I missed the PFP there. That’s the thing I’m most upset about because I proud myself on that kind of stuff. Then, I just left a couple of pitches up. (Lyle) Overbay

Arrieta done after 5 1/3 (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jake Arrieta has turned in the longest outing by an Orioles starter this spring against major league competition. And yes, the Pirates count. Arrieta appeared to run out of gas after retiring 14 of 15 batters. Neil Walker hit his second home run off Arrieta, and the next two batters walked. Arrieta threw 91 pitches, including 54 for strikes. Chris Jakabauskas replaced

A few updates (and more)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jake Arrieta has retired 13 of the last 14 batters, and the Orioles have given him a 5-3 lead in the fifth inning. Instant update: J.J. Hardy singled off reliever Evan Meek to increase the lead to 6-3. We’re still in the fifth. Arrieta has blanked the Pirates on one hit since the first inning. He’s thrown 70 pitches, 45 for strikes.

Young starters need to crank it up (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - We learned today that Jeremy Guthrie will start the April 1 opener and Brian Matusz will take the ball the following night. We also received a strong hint that Jake Arrieta will get the call for the first home game, making him the No. 4 starter. The rotation is coming into focus, but the young starters need to give a clearer indication

Guthrie talks about OD start, Pirates lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jeremy Guthrie will start the Orioles’ regular-season opener for the third time in four years, an assignment that he calls “a big honor.” “I think it’s a manifestation of the confidence that Buck (Showalter) and the coaching staff have in me,” he said. “I’m pleased to be out there. It’s a great feeling to be out there with your team on the

Showalter on a variety of topics

SARASOTA, Fla. - Pat Egan, claimed by the Brewers in the Rule 5 draft and returned to the Orioles today, will work out here and possibly pitch in a game. However, he’s not part of the official camp roster and eventually will be sent to Triple-A Norfolk. Egan doesn’t have to be included on the 40-man roster. “He’ll be here in a day or two,”

Rosario, Egan trade places, Duchscherer pushed to April 21

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter just buried reporters with news during batting practice. It won’t all fit into the headline on this blog entry. Rule 5 pick Adrian Rosario cleared waivers and returned to the Brewers. Pat Egan cleared waivers and returned to the Orioles. Egan worked 6 1/3 scoreless innings and recorded two saves this spring. Justin Duchscherer is projected to make his

Rosario expected to be cut, Bell speaks

SARASOTA, Fla. - Rule 5 pick Adrian Rosario is expected to be included in today’s cuts. He’ll be placed on waivers, and another team can put in a claim and attempt to keep him on the major league roster. If Rosario clears as expected, the Orioles must offer him back to the Brewers for $25,000 or work out a trade. Rosario has a live arm,

Bell cut; O’s lineup vs. Pirates for Thursday (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Josh Bell is included in today’s cuts. He’s been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk and told he’ll play third base every day. Left-hander Zach Britton hasn’t been called into the manager’s office and is expected to make another start here. Here’s the Orioles’ lineup for tonight’s 7:05 p.m. game against Pittsburgh: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Derrek Lee 1B Vladimir Guerrero DH

Roster cuts coming today

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles will play their second consecutive night game, but they won’t do any traveling. The Pirates are coming to Sarasota. I made it back to my hotel from Fort Myers around midnight, so I had no problem staying in bed a little longer this morning. Jake Arrieta will start for the Orioles. He’s allowed six runs and 12 hits, with two

Machado debuts in 5-2 loss

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The ninth inning took on special meaning tonight because shortstop Manny Machado stepped to the plate against Twins reliever Chuck James. Of course, it happened while reporters were racing down from the press box to the seats beside the Orioles’ dugout. Machado grounded to short in the Orioles’ 5-2 loss at Hammond Stadium. Nervous? “No, not really,” he said. “I was

Matusz finds silver lining in bullpen (with two notes)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - It wasn’t until left-hander Brian Matusz returned to the bullpen to continue throwing that he salvaged part of his night. Matusz recorded only four outs and allowed four runs and four hits, with three walks and no strikeouts. He threw 56 pitches, but the most important ones came afterward. That’s when Matusz says he found the rhythm that abandoned him while

Matusz makes early exit, Jones homers

FORT MYERS, Fla. - It was hardly worth the drive over here. Left-hander Brian Matusz recorded only four outs tonight and was charged with four runs and five hits, with three walks and no strikeouts. The Twins lead, 4-1, in the third inning. Manager Buck Showalter summoned left-hander Alberto Castillo after Joe Mauer’s two-run single, which came on Matusz’s 56th pitch. The ball slammed off

Long first inning for Matusz

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Good thing the Orioles relaxed their facial-hair policy, or half the team would be in violation right now. The Twins forced Brian Matusz to throw 34 pitches in the first inning, 18 for strikes. Matusz had four full counts, walked two batters, gave up a hit and fell behind, 1-0. Denard Span walked and stole second base without a throw. Tsuyoshi

Showalter speaks

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Since manager Buck Showalter is all about finding nuggets, I wanted to pass along a few from today’s pre-game media session. On Brian Roberts making the trip: “We were going to wait until after (yesterday’s) game was over. Robby and I talked about 6 o’clock last night at the stadium. He wanted to get some right-handed at-bats, Obviously, (Francisco) Liriano presents

Quick updates

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Justin Duchscherer threw the first part of today’s bullpen session on a half mound and the rest on a full mound. Manager Buck Showalter said Duchscherer felt “really good,” and the club will have a more definite plan for him tomorrow. Koji Uehara will pitch in a Triple-A game on Friday. Showalter still believes that Uehara will be ready for the

Gregg tweaks mechanics again, Machado here

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Kevin Gregg stayed back in camp today after pitching yesterday in a minor league game at Twin Lakes Park. Gregg faced five batters yesterday, allowing two hits, striking out two and hitting a batter. He threw 23 pitches, 16 for strikes. Gregg made an adjustment in his mechanics earlier in camp, leaning forward as he delivered the ball rather than staying

Roberts and Lee in lineup (and Twins lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter told reporters yesterday that Brian Roberts wasn’t making the trip to Fort Myers for tonight’s game against the Twins, but the second baseman is in the lineup. He’ll join Derrek Lee, who’s starting at first base. Also, no cuts will be announced today. We’ll most likely receive them tomorrow. For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Adam Jones CF Derrek

Cleaning out my notebook

SARASOTA, Fla. - Here’s a shocker: The Orioles are playing another night game on the road. Even more startling, we’re headed back to Fort Myers to watch the Twins - twice, including Friday afternoon, if you’re keeping score at home. The clubhouse opens to the media today at 1 p.m. The team bus leaves Sarasota at 2:15 p.m. Left-hander Brian Matusz and relievers David Riske,

Showalter and more Britton

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles defeated the Yankees, 6-2, before 8,347 at Ed Smith Stadium. Would be much nicer if it happened at Camden Yards with Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and Robinson Cano in the Yankees’ lineup, but a win is a win. Manager Buck Showalter will decide tomorrow afternoon whether Derrek Lee is making the trip to Fort Myers for the night game against

Britton on Britton

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jason Berken threw two scoreless, hitless innings after replacing Zach Britton. That’s three scoreless outings in his last four. He allowed two runs in three innings to the Twins in his most recent appearance before today. Michael Gonzalez gave up a run on a hit and walk in the eighth. He also struck out two. Matt Wieters has singled and twice flied

Tillman update, Hardy homers (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Chris Tillman worked six innings today in a minor league game at Twin Lakes Park. Facing a collection of Red Sox Triple-A hitters, Tillman allowed one earned run and seven hits, and struck out four. Tillman faced extra hitters in two innings, allowing him to increase his pitch count and record 22 outs. Tillman and Zach Britton, who’s allowed one run and

Quick note on Britton (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Left-hander Zach Britton has extended his scoreless-innings streak to 11 today by blanking the Yankees over the first two. He allowed back-to-back singles in the second inning, one off a broken bat, but retired the next two batters on ground balls. Britton’s fastball is registering 96 mph on the stadium gun. Not sure how accurate it is, but that’s what it says

Gregg and Uehara pitch at Twins Lakes

SARASOTA, Fla. - Kevin Gregg faced five batters today in a minor league game at Twin Lakes Park. He allowed two hits struck out two and hit a batter. He threw 23 pitches, 16 for strikes. “I felt good today,” Gregg said. “I got my mechanics back to where they need to be.” Koji Uehara, pitching in his first game since the Feb. 28 opener

Pregame Showalter

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter wrote out two lineups for today’s game - one with Derrek Lee and one without him. He decided to list Vladimir Guerrero as the designated hitter and bring Lee off the bench. Lee continues to receive treatment on his left foot after fouling a ball off it during Sunday’s game against the Phillies. “I didn’t want to put

Updating Duchscherer and Harris

SARASOTA, Fla. - It’s a scorcher here today at Ed Smith Stadium. I’m looking for the sunscreen vendor. The Orioles don’t need a fifth starter until April 10, which has become a target date for Justin Duchscherer. Duchscherer has pitched in only one game this spring, totaling two innings in Clearwater, because of stiffness in his left hip. He threw from 120 feet again today

Lee will come off bench today (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Derrek Lee isn’t in today’s lineup, but we’re told that he’ll replace Vladimir Guerrero as the designated hitter later in the game For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Matt Wieters C Vladimir Guerrero DH Luke Scott LF Adam Jones CF Mark Reynolds 3B J.J Hardy SS Jake Fox 1B Zach Britton LHP Update: Justin Duchscherer threw off flat ground

Lee unsure about today (with Yankees lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter will wait to determine first baseman Derrek Lee’s status before posting today’s lineup. Lee is hoping to play against the Yankees at Ed Smith Stadium, but he’ll do some running first to test his left foot. He’ll aim for tomorrow if he’s still experiencing some discomfort. Lee fouled a ball off his foot Sunday on the first pitch he

Guthrie talks about his day

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jeremy Guthrie wanted to increase his pitch count, work on his stuff and maintain it through six innings. He had a productive day. Guthrie, expected to take the ball for the April 1 opener, allowed one run and recorded 20 outs over six innings against a Twins Triple-A team. “I enjoyed building up again and trying to get six innings, which we

Guthrie goes six

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jeremy Guthrie threw six innings in today’s game against the Twins’ Triple-A team at Ed Smith Stadium. He recorded 20 outs after facing an extra batter in the second and third innings to increase his pitch count. The rules are relaxed on these days. Guthrie allowed one run and four hits, walked none and struck out four. He threw 82 pitches, 56

Off-day? What off-day?

SARASOTA, Fla. - Ignore the spring training schedule. Specifically, the word “off” next to today’s date. Camp is still open for business. Manager Buck Showalter arranged to have Triple-A and Double-A games played at the Ed Smith Stadium complex, so minor leaguers are heading over from Twin Lakes Park. Jeremy Guthrie will pitch in one of the 11 a.m. games to remain on his regular

Green delivers in clutch, Orioles win 9-8

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Have yourself a day, Nick Green. Green, who was 3-for-27 with two RBIs and 13 strikeouts before today, lined a two-out, two-run single into center field in the ninth inning to give the Orioles a 9-8 victory over the Rays. Mike Ballard threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings to pick up the win. Brendan Harris and Xavier Avery singled, and Josh Bell

Bergesen on Bergesen

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Brad Bergesen spoke to reporters in the visiting clubhouse after allowing two runs and eight hits, with one walk, over five innings. “I was much more pleased with how I worked my fastball,” he said. “More down in the zone. When I was missing, I was missing down rather than up, right over the plate. That was positive. The slider wasn’t

Roberts’ next game on Tuesday

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts confirmed that his next start will come Tuesday against the New York Yankees at Ed Smith Stadium. Roberts won’t play in tomorrow’s minor league games after going 0-for-2 with a walk and strikeout this afternoon. Roberts hadn’t been in the lineup since March 7, also against the Yankees. “Better than sitting on the sidelines,” he said.

Roberts and Bergesen updates (updated twice)

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Brian Roberts is 0-for-2 with a walk and a strikeout. He’s seen 10 pitches and swung at one, resulting in a ground ball to first base that ended the top of the fifth inning. Brendan Harris was ready to replace him in the field in the bottom of the fifth, but Roberts motioned that he wanted to stay in the game.

So far so good for Bergesen (updated)

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Going into today’s game against the Rays, Brad Bergesen had allowed nine earned runs (10 total) and 16 hits, with five walks, in his last three starts covering 9 2/3 innings. He isn’t assured of a spot in the rotation, so this outing is important. Evan Longoria singled with two outs in the first inning, but Adam Jones cut him down

Rays lineup and more

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Now I remember this place. We were in the press box here last spring when news broke about the Orioles trading for utility infielder Julio Lugo. Later that morning, catcher Chad Moeller refused his outright assignment to Triple-A Norfolk and became a free agent. Just another boring day at spring training. Brian Roberts is taking batting practice as I type this

Lee has MRI on foot (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - It’s always something. First baseman Derrek Lee fouled a ball off his left foot on the first pitch he saw yesterday from Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels. It didn’t start bothering him until he left the ballpark, and he underwent X-rays last night and an MRI at 8 a.m. today that came back clean. Lee was sent for the MRI after one area

Roberts in, Lee out

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brian Roberts is starting today for the first time since March 7, but Derrek Lee isn’t in the lineup. We’ll find out why later. For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Adam Jones CF Nick Markakis RF Luke Scott DH Mark Reynolds 3B Felix Pie LF Jake Fox 1B J.J. Hardy SS Craig Tatum C Brad Bergesen RHP

Uehara will pitch Tuesday, Pelzer reassigned (with quotes)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Koji Uehara will pitch Tuesday in a minor league game after having another successful bullpen session earlier today. Uehara has made one appearance this spring, allowing one run and two hits in one inning against the Pirates in the Feb. 28 exhibition opener in Bradenton. The Orioles reassigned pitcher Wynn Pelzer following today’s game, reducing their camp roster to 40. The Phillies

Quick Lee update (with quotes)

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’ll pass along Derrek Lee quotes in a few minutes, but I wanted to let you know that his right wrist felt great during his two plate appearances today. Lee said the plan all along called for him to get two at-bats. He’ll get three tomorrow in Port Charlotte and take off Monday. Lee sounds encouraged and figures to get enough at-bats

Rapada gives up another homer

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jake Arrieta came out of today’s game after walking two batters to open the fifth inning and striking out Jimmy Rollins. His line wasn’t complete until Shane Victorino greeted Clay Rapada with a three-run homer to left field. Orioles 5, Phillies 5. Arrieta is charged with four runs and four hits, with two walks and two strikeouts. He threw 79 pitches, including

Lee’s second plate appearance (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Derrek Lee is falling into a pattern of sorts in his first game with the Orioles. For the second time in two trips to the plate, Lee has gotten behind, 0-2, and worked the count full against Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels. He walked in his first at-bat, but struck out to end the second inning. The Orioles continue to lead the Phillies,

Lee’s first plate appearance (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles didn’t waste any time putting Derek Lee in an RBI situation. Lee got his first spring plate appearance in the first inning against Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels after Robert Andino reached on a bunt single and Adam Jones walked. Lee fouled off a pitch and swung through another to fall behind, 0-2. He took a ball while the Orioles executed

Pre-game Showalter

SARASOTA, Fla. - We’re still waiting for the Orioles to announce their fifth roster cut. Hint: It’s a pitcher. Ryan Adams was reassigned earlier today to the minor league camp. A reminder that you’re optioned if you’re on the 40-man roster, and reassigned if you’re not included. “You can tell why people think well of him offensively,” manager Buck Showalter said. “He’s got a chance

Adams among roster cuts (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles made four more roster cuts this morning, and the list includes second baseman Ryan Adams. This official ends any debate over the possibility that Adams will replace Brian Roberts at second base if the Orioles’ leadoff hitter is injured. The Orioles sent Adams, who batted .500 this spring, and pitcher Armando Gabino to minor league camp. They optioned outfielder Matt

Bordick going into Orioles Hall of Fame

SARASOTA, Fla. - Former shortstop Mike Bordick, who set the major league record for most errorless games and chances at his position, will be inducted into the Orioles Hall of Fame before the Aug. 13 game against the Detroit Tigers at Camden Yards. Bordick played for the Orioles from 1997 to 2000, and again from 2001 to 2002 after being traded to the Mets for

Lee ready to play

SARASOTA, Fla. - It’s become a running joke with first baseman Derrek Lee. Reporters approach him for another health or workout update, his eyes grow wide and he gets a look on his face that says “Really? Again?” Lee has been a good sport about it. He also looks forward to the day when the line of questioning centers on a key hit late in

Today’s lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - Are you ready for Derrek Lee’s debut with the Orioles? He’s in the lineup for today’s MASN game against the Phillies. For the Orioles: Robert Andino 2B Adam Jones CF Derrek Lee 1B Vladimir Guerrero DH Mark Reynolds 3B Nolan Reimold LF Randy Winn RF Brendan Harris SS Craig Tatum C Jake Arrieta RHP Michael Gonzalez, Jim Johnson and David Riske also

Postgame Showalter

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter is in mid-season form. Showalter thought a 3-2 loss to the Twins should have been a 3-2 victory. He pointed to two mistakes, though he didn’t mention anyone by name. “The two things that cost us the ballgame is we had the throw to third base (Luke Scott) cost us a run, and the bad at-bat (Jake Fox) with

Lee scheduled to start tomorrow

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles first baseman Derrek Lee could make his long-awaited debut tomorrow afternoon. Lee is scheduled to start at first base against the Phillies at Ed Smith Stadium. He’ll get two or three at-bats. The only way that the plan doesn’t unfold is if Lee shows up tomorrow with more soreness in his right wrist. Lee took live batting practice on the field

Matusz talks about outing

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Twins took a 3-1 lead against the Orioles in the top of the seventh on Jeff Bailey’s two-out, two-run single off Jason Berken. They had two runners in scoring position because Luke Scott fielded Matt Tolbert’s single to left and tried to cut down Trevor Plouffe at third base. Tolbert raced to second and scored on Bailey’s hit. Scott tried to

Matusz through the third (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Time to take a closer look at Brian Matusz after three innings. The young left-hander has allowed one run to the Twins, on shortstop Matt Tolbert’s first spring homer, and four hits. Luke Hughes led off the second with a bunt single and Steve Holm doubled with two outs, but the Twins didn’t break through until one out in the third. Matusz

Pregame Showalter (and Lee update)

SARASOTA, Fla. - First baseman Derrek Lee took batting practice outdoors and said his right wrist felt fine. He isn’t sure about tomorrow’s schedule, however. He’ll see how the wrist responds overnight. He could take live BP again or possibly make his Orioles debut. Also, the Orioles aren’t currently interested in second baseman Luis Castillo, released earlier today by the Mets. Here are a few

Roster cuts tomorrow

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles will make another round of roster cuts tomorrow morning. Manager Buck Showalter said the total will be “more than three, less than 10.” Justin Duchscherer threw off flat ground from 120-130 feet. Yesterday, he threw from 100 feet. I’m not good at math, but it sounds like he threw from a greater distance today. Derrek Lee and Brian Roberts are

Two quick injury updates (with Duchscherer quotes)

SARASOTA, Fla. - A day without injury updates is like a day without sunshine. Justin Duchscherer threw off flat ground from 100 feet yesterday, and he’ll do the exact same thing today. That’s as much as we know about his schedule. Duchscherer is still confident that he will be ready by the April 1 opener. He isn’t worried about logging enough innings. Manager Buck Showalter

Tonight’s lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - Here’s the Orioles lineup for tonight’s game vs. the Twins: J.J. Hardy SS Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Vladimir Guerrero DH Mark Reynolds 3B Luke Scott LF Jake Fox 1B Matt Wieters C Cesar Izturis 2B Brian Matusz LHP

Decisions looming two weeks before the opener

SARASOTA, Fla. - We’re under the lights again tonight, which means the clubhouse won’t open to the media until 2 p.m. You know the drill. The Twins are coming to town, and left-hander Francisco Liriano will try to forget about his last visit to Sarasota. He allowed six runs in 1 2/3 innings back on March 9 in an 11-2 loss to the Orioles. Joe

The last words on 13-3 win

BRADENTON, Fla. - It never fails. A team is almost no-hit one night, and it erupts for 13 runs the next day. Josh Rupe extended his scoreless innings streak to 11 2/3 by completing the last three today. I guess we can’t eliminate him from the bullpen discussion. Manager Buck Showalter playfully reminded reporters that he batted Matt Wieters fourth today. Showalter didn’t seem real

Fox trots

BRADENTON, Fla. - The Orioles pushed across three runs against left-hander Joe Beimel in the top of the eighth to increase their lead to 12-3. Matt Angle had an RBI single. Nick Green and Brendan Harris drove in runs with ground balls. Robert Andino’s RBI triple in the eighth upped the lead to 13-3. Pirates right fielder Miles Durham crashed into the fence and had

Fox does it again, Tillman talks (updated)

BRADENTON, Fla. - Jake Fox is out of control. Fox homered for the second time today, and the seventh time this spring. It was another two-run shot that easily cleared the left field fence. Contact was so loud, he made heads turn all the way down in Fort Lauderdale. Matt Wieters has three hits, including two doubles. He reached second base in the top of

Josh Bell’s wild ride (with Britton update)

BRADENTON, Fla. - With the time change last weekend, Josh Bell might want to set his clock back 24 hours. He’s having a bad, bad day. I already wrote about Bell’s error and his mental lapse on a rundown. He just got tagged out in the fourth inning as Felix Pie drew a walk. Bell was running on the pitch, slid into second and assumed

Orioles take lead in 3rd, Fox homers

BRADENTON, Fla. - Jake Fox completed a six-run third inning with a mammoth two-run shot to left field off Pirates starter Ross Ohlendorf. That’s six homers for Fox. If you connected them, they would reach my townhouse in Sykesville. This ball bounced off the roof of a building that sits beyond the fence. If I were Fox, I’d still be striking a pose at home

Lapses in first inning (and second)

BRADENTON, Fla. - I’m not sure how Chris Tillman got out of the first inning without allowing a run. Tillman walked the leadoff hitter, Jose Tabata, and another batter reached on an error. Another play wasn’t made cleanly, and the Orioles almost botched a rundown. Still scoreless as we head to the bottom of the first. Neil Walker followed Tabata’s walk with a grounder to

Pre-game Showalter (and Pirates lineup)

BRADENTON, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter met with reporters in his office before heading to McKechnie Field for today’s game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. I passed along the highlights, but here are some quotes to go with them. On Derrek Lee taking batting practice today: “He feels really good today. It’s different from some things in the past. So far so good.” On Lee’s game

Roberts 50-50 for weekend

SARASOTA, Fla. - Second baseman Brian Roberts is scheduled to hit soft toss and off a tee this morning, and also participate in defensive drills. Manager Buck Showalter said Roberts is “50-50” to return to the lineup this weekend. Roberts hasn’t played since March 7 because of back spasms. First baseman Derrek Lee will take batting practice in the indoor cage today off former Orioles

Today’s lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - Top of the morning to you. I’m leaving in an hour to make my third trip to Bradenton this spring. Don’t be green with envy. For the Orioles: Felix Pie CF J.J. Hardy SS Nolan Reimold LF Matt Wieters DH Jake Fox C Randy Winn RF Brendan Harris 2B Josh Bell 3B Brandon Snyder 1B Chris Tillman RHP Josh Rupe and Jeremy

Final thoughts on 10-0 loss

TAMPA, Fla. - I’ll be brief, and not because I’m facing an hour drive back to Sarasota. The Orioles were held to one hit, Vladimir Guerrero’s double off Mariano Rivera with two outs in the seventh. If you love a parade, you were in heaven with all the relievers used tonight. “Some guys threw the ball well, some guys struggled,” manager Buck Showalter said. “We

VandenHurk ineffective again

TAMPA, Fla. - Rick VandenHurk faced six batters tonight and retired none of them. VandenHurk was removed after allowing three runs. Armando Gabino inherited a bases loaded mess, so his line wasn’t officially complete. It is now. Another run scored on a fielder’s choice grounder from Alex Rodriguez. Robinson Cano followed with an RBI single. Five runs charged to VandenHurk. Yankees 9, Orioles 0 VandenHurk

There goes the no-no

TAMPA, Fla. - The Orioles were spared the indignity of being no-hit in an exhibition game. They just needed someone named Mariano Rivera to replace Ivan Nova. Vladimir Guerrero doubled to right-center field off the Yankees’ closer with two outs in the seventh. Finally, a hit. Nova hit a batter and walked one through the sixth. He threw only 59 pitches. The Yankees were going

Johnson on Johnson (updated twice)

TAMPA, Fla. - Jim Johnson was amused to find two reporters waiting for him outside the clubhouse after tonight’s start. “Are you kidding?” he asked with a grin. Nope. We needed the starter, and Johnson qualified tonight. Johnson allowed one run on three hits. Derek Jeter reached on an infield hit after the ball deflected off Johnson’s glove. Nick Swisher singled on a hit-and-run, and

Tatum sits and waits

TAMPA, Fla. - Craig Tatum doesn’t like missing games unless it’s part of his life as a backup catcher. Tatum remains shut down with tightness in his right oblique. He hopes to take batting practice tomorrow. Tatum sustained the injury while slipping on the plate during an infield drill, and he aggravated it while rounding third base in Saturday’s game in Kissimmee. “Buck (Showalter) asked

More injury updates (updated)

TAMPA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter indicated that Brian Roberts, Derrek Lee and Koji Uehara could appear in games this weekend. Roberts hit off a tee from both sides of the “plate” and is encouraged by his progression. Lee didn’t take live bating practice, instead hitting soft toss, but it could happen tomorrow. His debut is tentatively set for this weekend. Koji Uehara had another

Tonight’s lineups

SARASOTA, Fla. - For the Orioles: Robert Andino 2B Nick Markakis RF Adam Jones CF Vladimir Guerrero DH Luke Scott LF Mark Reynolds 3B Matt Wieters C Josh Bell 1B Cesar Izturis SS Jim Johnson RHP No, the Orioles aren’t considering a role change for Johnson. It’s just a bullpen game while Jeremy Guthrie threw five innings against a bunch of Red Sox Triple-A hitters

Reynolds trying to get untracked

SARASOTA, Fla. - After a nice stretch of home cooking, the Orioles hit the road again for another game played under the lights. The clubhouse opens to the media at 2 p.m. and I’ll be Tampa-bound about an hour later for tonight’s matchup with the Yankees. Since Jeremy Guthrie is getting his innings at the minor league complex, the Orioles will dip into their bullpen

Final thoughts on 14-8 loss

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles didn’t go down quietly in the ninth, scoring four runs in a 14-8 loss to the Astros before 5,262. Robert Andino hit a two-run homer, Nolan Reimold and Michel Hernandez doubled, and Ryan Adams stroked an RBI single. Manager Buck Showalter noted that Brad Bergesen’s command “wasn’t real good.” “He had one good inning. Got his work in, got his

Hearing from Bergesen and Gregg

SARASOTA, Fla. - That escalated quickly. I mean, that really got out of hand fast. It jumped up a notch. The Astros lead the Orioles, 14-4, in the ninth. They’re outhitting the Orioles, 15-4. Ryan Drese was charged with five runs and seven hits in three innings. That’s no way to compete for a starting job. Kevin Gregg talked about the mechanical adjustment, which didn’t

From bad to worse

SARASOTA, Fla. - Kevin Gregg allowed five runs (four earned) and three hits, with one walk, in one-third of an inning. Brett Wallace hit a grand slam, and Wynn Pelzer replaced Gregg after a runner reached on an error. Pelzer had his own issues, surrendering a two-run double to Brian Bogusevic and hitting J.R. Towles. Gregg explained later that he made a mechanical adjustment that

The line on Bergesen

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen was pulled from today’s game after four innings and 52 pitches, 26 for strikes. Bergesen faced the minimum number of batters through 3 1/3 innings despite two four-pitch walks, but he allowed back-to-back singles, a sacrifice fly by Jason Michaels and Bill Hall’s two-run homer. Astros 3, Orioles 1. Bergesen walked two and struck out one. In his last three

Fox still mashing (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - I vowed to withhold this blog entry until Jake Fox’s ball landed, but I don’t have all day. Fox crushed a 1-1 pitch from Astros starter Aneury Rodriguez and cleared everything in left field. Pretty much everything in Sarasota. Fox’s fifth spring home run gave the Orioles a 1-0 lead. He also has eight RBIs. Manager Buck Showalter gave Fox a start

More pregame Showalter

SARASOTA, Fla. - I passed along a few quotes from manager Buck Showalter this morning before heading to the clubhouse. Here are a few more: On the results of Justin Duchscherer’s MRA and Brian Roberts’ MRI: “With him and Robby, there wasn’t anything new going on there, but that doesn’t mean everything is fine. There’s still things that have been a challenge for both of

Lee: “It won’t be much longer before I’m in a game”

SARASOTA, Fla. - First baseman Derrek Lee said his wrist felt good after hitting soft tosses, and he’ll take live batting practice tomorrow. “It’ll be a good test,” he said. “If it feels good off coaches’ BP, then it won’t be much longer before I’m in a game. I just want to make sure I get it right so I can be out here with

Roberts starts progression toward opener

SARASOTA, Fla. - Second baseman Brian Roberts returned to the clubhouse after visiting a back specialist today. He described his back as feeling “much better, definitely. Quite a bit better.” And he remains hopeful of starting the April 1 opener after assuring reporters following yesterday’s MRI that the discomfort wasn’t related to his herniated disk. “Saw the doc today and got good, encouraging news, so

Encouraging news on Roberts, Duchscherer, Lee, Uehara

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter provided a quick health update during batting practice. It never gets old. Showalter said the MRI on Brian Roberts’ back didn’t show anything new. He still believes that Roberts, who’s visiting a back specialist this morning, could be ready for the April 1 opener. “I’m going to speak to Robby at lunch time,” Showalter said. “I know talking to

Duchscherer update and lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - Pitcher Justin Duchscherer is waiting for the results of yesterday’s MRA, but he struck an ominous tone this morning when he compared the stiffness in his left hip to the way it felt before his most recent surgery. “The best I can describe it is it felt like it did last year before I had to have it operated on, so I

Final thoughts on 8-2 victory

SARASOTA, Fla. - Both teams pounded out 14 hits today, but the Orioles made more of them count. Manager Buck Showalter met with reporters on the field after an 8-2 victory over the Pirates that improved their spring record to 8-7-2. Showalter didn’t have any updates on Justin Duchscherer or Brian Roberts. Koji Uehara threw a bullpen session today, will take tomorrow off and will

Arrieta talks about outing (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles increased their lead to 7-2 in the seventh inning on Jake Fox’s leadoff home run, his fourth this spring, and Matt Angle’s RBI single that followed a Nolan Reimold bloop double into left field. Ryan Adams reached on an infield hit in his first at-bat today. Former Oriole Garrett Atkins, batting for the pitcher, flied to center. Update: Nick Green,

Back-to-back web gems

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Pirates put runners on second and third with no outs in the fifth inning against reliever Jeremy Accardo. They didn’t score. They didn’t erase a 3-2 deficit. Finally, a little excitement in this game. Pedro Alvarez sent a screaming liner to third baseman Mark Reynolds, who made the catch and lunged at the bag to double off John Bowker. Two outs.

He who hesitates ... (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Nick Markakis lined a two-out double down the right field line in the bottom of the first inning. He didn’t stop there. Well, he sort of did, and then he kept going. Markakis slowed up after rounding second base and was thrown out at third to end the inning. That split second of indecision cost him. Ryan Adams did the same thing

Showalter talks about Mahoney

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter was clearly impressed with first baseman Joe Mahoney, the organization’s minor league Player of the Year in 2010 who was cut earlier today. Mahoney was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk after going 7-for-17. “One thing you have to realize is this guy went from 250, 260 to 20-something pounds less than he was,” Showalter said. “He’s done a lot to

Pregame Showalter, Mahoney cut

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’ll let manager Buck Showalter pass along the injury updates. Why should I have all the fun? “(Justin) Duchscherer’s got a chiropractor today and he’s got an MRA at 4 o’clock today,” Showalter said. “(Brian) Roberts has an MRI at 3:30. The doctor he’s been seeing, he’ll see him tomorrow at 9 o’clock when they’ve got all the pictures and all the

Quick injury updates

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles pitcher Justin Duchscherer is visiting a chiropractor today because of soreness in his left hip. He’s scheduled to receive an MRA at 4 p.m., which shouldn’t be confused with an MRI. An MRA is an MRI that also includes an arthrogram. Dye will be injected into the hip to reveal any potential structural damage. Brian Roberts will undergo an MRI on

Today’s lineup (with Pirates)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Here’s the Orioles lineup for today’s game against the Pirates: Randy Winn LF Felix Pie CF Nick Markakis RF Vladimir Guerrero DH Luke Scott 1B Mark Reynolds 3B Matt Wieters C Robert Andino 2B Cesar Izturis SS Jake Arrieta RHP For the Pirates: Pedro Ciriaco 2B John Bowker 1B Andrew McCutchen CF Pedro Alvarez 3B Matt Diaz LF Steve Pearce RF Josh

Talking about Britton and other stuff

SARASOTA, Fla. - No NIT invite for the Terps? There goes my bracket. I already had them winning the whole thing. Obviously, I should have waited. Loved the Fab Five documentary last night, though I watched it in two parts. Missed the first half of it on ESPN, but caught the replay in ESPN2 immediately afterward and pieced it together in my head. No wonder

Final thoughts on 9-1 loss (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Not much to report on today’s 9-1 loss to the Detroit Tigers beyond what I’ve already written in previous entries. Mark Reynolds went 2-for-3 to leave his average at .207. The Orioles were charged with one error. Manager Buck Showalter thought it easily could have been more. Did anyone pick Josh Rupe as their spring training dark horse? Rupe tossed 2 2/3

Duchscherer to undergo MRI

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles pitcher Justin Duchscherer will undergo an MRI on his left hip this week after being scratched from today’s simulated game. Duchscherer likely will have to wait until Tuesday for the MRI. He’d be a day behind second baseman Brian Roberts, who will have an MRI on his back tomorrow. Duchscherer threw off flat ground this morning and complained of soreness in

Matusz focused on rhythm, not results

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles left-hander Brian Matusz made some adjustments in his delivery today after working with pitching coach Mark Connor. “The results, not happy about the results, but I’m really happy about the process,” he said after being charged with three runs (two earned) in 3 1/3 innings. “I feel like I’m making some adjustments that I need to, and I’m excited to sit

Hardy not resting on his laurels (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Yes, I went there again. J.J. Hardy hit his first home run as an Oriole leading off the bottom of the fourth inning. He drove a pitch from Charlie Furbush over the left field fence to reduce Detroit’s lead to 4-1. The Orioles had one hit off Tigers starter Adam Wilk through three innings, a single by Vladimir Guerrero. And if you’ve

Ugly first inning (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Left-hander Brian Matusz would like a do-over against the Detroit Tigers. Matusz threw 33 pitches, 20 for strikes, in the first inning. He’s charged with one earned run (two total) and three hits, and he walked a batter. The Orioles would like to get four innings out of him. That’s going to be tricky. Austin Jackson opened the game with a single

Showalter talks about Duchscherer

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter is waiting to hear back from his athletic training staff after Justin Duchscherer declined to pitch in the simulated game on the Camden Yards field. Duchscherer alerted the club that he felt some discomfort while throwing off flat ground. “He just came out here and wasn’t able to pitch,” Showalter said. “I don’t really know where we’re at.

Duchscherer scratched from simulated game (with lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Justin Duchscherer wasn’t able to pitch in today’s simulated game because of discomfort in his left hip. Duchscherer threw on flat ground and said he didn’t feel comfortable. The medical staff is checking on him. The Orioles could go with a four-man rotation early in the season because of the April 5 off-day, giving them more time with Duchscherer. The simulated game

While waiting for the lineup...

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles play three straight home games, so I can leave my GPS at the hotel. I’ve got this route memorized. The clubhouse was closed to the media in the morning because of meetings. Players are participating in drills on the main field. Justin Duchscherer is getting ready to pitch in an intrasquad game on one of the back fields. It’s the

Final thoughts on 6-4 win

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Brandon Snyder collected his third hit in the ninth inning, a run-scoring single that completed the Orioles’ 6-4 victory over the Houston Astros. Snyder came within a triple of the cycle while raising his spring average to .360. Ryan Adams also had three hits and is batting .500 with six RBIs. “We had some things we wanted him to get adjusted with

Quick game update (and Britton quotes)

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - We had a long delay in the top of the seventh inning after a woman was hit by a Jake Fox foul ball behind the Astros’ bullpen area. She was removed on a stretcher. Players left the Astros dugout and walked to the railing. Fox eventually returned to the Orioles’ dugout and watched from the top step. He struck out once play

Britton blanks Astros

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Left-hander Zach Britton extended his spring scoreless innings streak to nine today by shutting out the Houston Astros through the fourth. Chris Tillman replaced him as scheduled. Britton allowed four hits, walked two and struck out two. By my unofficial count, he threw 57 pitches, including 38 for strikes. Britton’s pace was slow in the first, when he walked Oswaldo Navarro with

Answering the Adams question

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Ryan Adams was in the Orioles’ original lineup today as the starting second baseman. Brandon Harris replaced him in the second lineup. Adam was re-inserted in the third lineup. Good idea to play him today. Adams gave the Orioles a 1-0 lead in the second inning with a double to right field off Houston’s J.A. Happ that scored Brandon Snyder, who also

Today’s lineup and scratches (updated)

KiSSIMMEE, Fla. - Catcher Matt Wieters was excused from making the trip today because of a tender thumb. He could play if this game meant anything. The club is just giving him a break. Also, first baseman Joe Mahoney was scratched after tweaking his hamstring yesterday on the basepaths. Infielder Cesar Izturis didn’t make the trip because he played yesterday after being sidelined with a

Still waiting for lineup

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter didn’t post a lineup this morning and we’re still waiting for his arrival at Osceola County Stadium. I’m looking at the travel roster and it doesn’t include Cesar Izturis. He isn’t making the trip, so forget what I wrote earlier about him starting. Change of plans. Matt Wieters didn’t accompany the team here, either. He’s not hurt, but he

Giving you a Kissimmee goodbye

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’m heading over to Kissimmee today for the game against the Astros. I’m told it’s not the end of the earth, but you can see it from there. The Sun’s Dan Connolly will handle the driving and the choice of music. It’s a small price to pay for the thrill of another exhibition game at a faraway place with the Orioles’ lineup

Roberts MRI scheduled, 13 cuts made (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts saw a back specialist today and received a few “trigger point injections,” according to manager Buck Showalter. An MRI has been scheduled for tomorrow. Roberts will be shut down until Tuesday at the earliest. The cortisone is suppose to relax the spasms. “We’re at a stage still in spring training where time is on our side a

Guthrie talks about his outing (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jason Berken needed a good outing today and he got it. He retired all six batters he faced. The Phillies continue to lead, 8-3, in the eighth inning. Here are some quotes from Jeremy Guthrie, who was charged with four runs and six hits on a blustery day. On getting through four innings: “I’ve been trying to work quickly, trying to keep

Rapada on a roll

SARASOTA, Fla. - Left-handed specialist Clay Rapada just breezed through the sixth inning, which seemed appropriate on an extremely windy day. Rapada actually faced two left-handed hitters, striking out Brian Schneider on three pitches and retiring Pete Orr on a one-hopper to the mound. Four pitches, two outs. Freddy Galvis flied to left field to end the inning. Rapada threw 11 pitches, nine for strikes.

Guthrie goes four (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - I didn’t like Jeremy Guthrie’s chances of going four innings today after he needed 20 pitches to get through a three-run first, but he made it. Guthrie threw seven pitches in the second inning and eight in the fourth. He left after throwing 53, including 33 for strikes. Guthrie is charged with four runs and six hits, with one walk and one

Forgettable first for Guthrie (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Phillies scored three runs off Jeremy Guthrie in the first inning, the first two coming on Raul Ibanez’s homer to center field. Guthrie walked Shane Victorino with one out, and Ibanez jumped on a 2-0 pitch. Ryan Howard struck out, but Ross Gload doubled and Delwyn Young singled to right for a 3-0 lead. Luke Scott cut off Nick Markakis’ throw

Roberts could undergo more testing on back (with quotes)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts isn’t able to take infield or batting practice today, and he could undergo more tests on his back. Roberts hit in the cage yesterday, but he’s been shut down again today. He hasn’t played since Monday night because of spasms. Manager Buck Showalter couldn’t provide more information on the tests or whether they were necessarily, but the

More about Uehara and Lee

SARASOTA, Fla. - Koji Uehara spoke this morning about the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and his attempts to reach his parents and extended family. Speaking through interpreter Jiwon Bang, Uehara said the earthquake hit “in a different place, but there has been some damage where I live.” “At this moment, I don’t really know all the details yet, but I am guessing that the

Cuts made, lineup change, Uehara speaks

SARASOTA, Fla. - We got a late start this morning, but it’s been a busy one. The Orioles made their first round of cuts, which included catcher Caleb Joseph, infielder Pedro Florimon and outfielder Tyler Henson. Catcher Adam Donachie sat at his locker in shorts and a t-shirt, so we’re assuming that he’s also heading to the minor league side. The official list will be

Izturis returns, Roberts does not

SARASOTA, Fla. - Players were given a later report time this morning following last night’s 11-8 win over the Pirates in Bradenton. The clubhouse opens to the media at 9:30 a.m. Brian Roberts isn’t in today’s lineup vs. Phillies left-hander Cliff Lee, though he took batting practice yesterday in Sarasota, and he’s not supposed to travel to Kissimmee tomorrow. Guess the earliest we’ll see him

Fireworks after the fireworks

SARASOTA, Fla. - The fine folks at McKechnie Field set off fireworks after tonight’s game, which seemed a bit redundant. The two teams supplied plenty of them - and a lot of errors. The Orioles outlasted the Pirates, 11-8, with left-hander Troy Patton leaving the Witness Protection Program to strike out two in the ninth and record the save. I packed up my laptop and

Adams homers again, Bergesen speaks (updated)

BRADENTON, Fla. - Ryan Adams hit his second spring training home run, and it went a mile. He cleared the palm trees in right field - yes, the opposite field - against Pirates reliever Joel Hanrahan in the fifth inning to give the Orioles a 5-4 lead. Adams’ two-run shot followed a walk to Nolan Reimold, Brandon Snyder’s RBI double and Craig Tatum’s RBI single.

Bergesen banged around (updated)

BRADENTON, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter wanted to get four innings out of starter Brad Bergesen, but the right-hander’s pitch count stands at 48 after the second. Even worse, the Orioles trail the Pirates, 4-1. The run in the first inning was unearned after Craig Tatum’s error, but Bergesen surrendered four hits and walked a batter in the second. The defense let him down again,

Trying to catch on (updated twice)

BRADENTON, Fla. - Jake Fox is starting in left field tonight, but he’s primarily competing for the backup catching job. Though Fox could make the club in a utility role, it seems apparent that he’s mostly going head-to-head with Craig Tatum, who’s starting behind the plate against the Pirates. Asked what he’s looking for in a backup catcher and whether versatility is a factor, manager

Updates on Roberts and Uehara

BRADENTON, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter arrived during batting practice because he stayed back in Sarasota to watch Brian Roberts hit on the field. Roberts could return to the lineup tomorrow after being sidelined with back spasms. He won’t make the trip to Kissimmee on Saturday. Pitching coach Mark Connor also stayed back to watch Koji Uehara throw on flat ground. How flat? We’re

Pirates lineup

BRADENTON, Fla. - For those of you scoring at home, here’s the Pirates lineup: Jose Tabata LF Matt Diaz RF Neil Walker 2B Lyle Overbay 1B Garrett Atkins 3B Ronny Cedeno SS Gorkys Hernandez CF Jason Jaramillo C Paul Maholm LHP No designated hitter for the Pirates tonight. Their choice. Jeff Karstans, Joel Hanrahan, Evan Meek, Chris Resop and Jose Veras also are slated to

Tonight’s lineup (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - I haven’t started my drive to Bradenton, but I’ve already got a lineup for you. For the Orioles: J.J. Hardy SS Adam Jones CF Mark Reynolds 3B Vladimir Guerrero DH Jake Fox LF Nolan Reimold RF Brandon Snyder 1B Craig Tatum C Ryan Adams 2B Brad Bergesen RHP Josh Rupe and Jeremy Accardo also are slated to pitch tonight. Fox gets a

Feats of Clay Rapada

SARASOTA, Fla. - I just opened the curtains and saw my first heavy rain of the spring. It’s coming down in buckets, accompanied by claps of thunder, but the forecast calls for clearing in the afternoon. Time spent pairing up the animals has probably been wasted. The Orioles will be playing under the lights in Bradenton tonight, their second road game against the Pirates in

Drese goes three innings in Fort Myers (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Ryan Drese is trying to force his way into the Orioles’ rotation. He kept pushing tonight in Fort Myers. I checked the game tracker, and Drese allowed one run, on a J.D. Drew homer, and three hits over three innings. He walked one and struck out one. Drese retired the side in order in the first inning, but Drew led off the

Lee MRI comes back clean

SARASOTA, Fla. - The MRI taken earlier today on Derrek Lee’s right wrist didn’t reveal any structural damage, matching the results of yesterday’s X-rays. Lee is dealing with some soreness that he believes is due to the atrophy that developed while his hand was in a cast following surgery in November to repair a torn ligament in his thumb. “The MRI came back normal. Nothing

Reviewing an 11-2 victory

SARASOTA, Fla. - Well, that was fun. The Orioles totaled 12 runs in their last five games before today. They scored 11 today. The finishing touches on an 11-2 win were applied by Ryan Adams, who homered, and left-hander Alberto Castillo, who easily retired the three batters he faced in the ninth. I failed to mention earlier that Adam Jones’ long home run came against

Talking about Guerrero, talking to Arrieta (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Vladimir Guerrero wasn’t trying to hit the Twins’ bus. It only looked that way. Guerrero launched his second spring home run, easily clearing the fence in left-center field against Twins reliever Alex Burnett to increase the Orioles’ lead to 7-1 in the fifth. Luke Scott scalded a ball to first, but it turned into an out. Nolan Reimold beat out a chopper

Orioles knock out Liriano (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles scored six runs off Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano in 1 2/3 innings. Making his first official spring start, Liriano departed with his team trailing, 6-1. Adam Jones doubled with two outs in the second to score Nick Markakis, who walked after J.J. Hardy grounded into a double play. A misplayed fly ball off Vladimir Guerrero’s bat allowed Jones to score.

Orioles jump on Twins early (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Sounds scandalous, but I’m referring to today’s game. Shame on you. The Orioles scored four runs off Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano in the first inning to take a 4-0 lead. J.J Hardy walked, Adam Jones singled with one out, Vladimir Guerrero walked and Mark Reynolds drilled a 94 mph fastball into left-center field for a 2-0 lead. Luke Scott bounced to first,

A few pregame notes (with quotes)

Orioles manager Buck Showalter told reporters that Justin Duchscherer’s hip is fine today and he’ll pitch again Sunday in an intrasquad game. Duchscherer is scheduled to throw three innings if his pitch count allows it. Showalter doesn’t want Brian Matusz to pitch in relief again and he needs to separate the left-hander from Duchscherer, which explains the intrasquad game. “That will allow us to control

Scott: “I don’t feel good at the plate” (with lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The good news for Luke Scott is he’s fully aware of the glitch that’s caused him to go hitless with five strikeouts in 12 spring training at-bats. The bad news is he’s been unable to correct it. “I don’t feel good at the plate. My timing’s off,” Scott said. “Batting practice, I feel great. My swing is fine. Mechanically, I’m sound. But

Updating Roberts and Izturis (with lineup)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Overheard this morning at breakfast: “Oh, it’s going to be chilly Friday. Sixty-eight degrees.” Yeah, chilly. Brian Roberts said his back feels a little better, but he won’t play in today’s game against the Twins in Sarasota. And there’s no way he’s traveling to Fort Myers tonight for the other split-squad game. “It’s not too bad,” he said. Roberts said he woke

Lee to have MRI tomorrow

SARASOTA, Fla. - Derrek Lee will have a precautionary MRI on his wrist tomorrow. According to the team, Dr. John Wilckens feels confident that there is no damage to the wrist and that the discomfort is the result of tendinitis due to a lack of baseball activity while he was recovering from surgery. However, just to be safe, Lee will have an MRI in Sarasota

Post-loss Showalter

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Rule 5 pick Adrian Rosario walked the first two batters he faced in the bottom of the ninth while protecting a 3-2 lead. The next batter, Michael Martinez reached on a bunt single, with Rosario falling backward after fielding the ball. Carlos Rivero followed with a single into center field, scoring two runs and giving the Phillies a 4-3 victory over the

Game update, Matusz talks

CLEARWATER, Fla. - The Orioles are taking a 3-2 lead into the eighth after scoreless innings from Michael Gonzalez and Jim Johnson. Gonzalez issued a two-out walk and gave up a hit in the sixth. Johnson gave up back-to-back hits with two outs in the seventh, though shortstop Pedro Florimon easily could have been charged with an error on the second one. Both relievers struck

Matusz done, Lee update, Duchscherer talks

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Brian Matusz pitched 2 1/3 innings today before manager Buck Showalter sprinted out of the dugout and removed him from the game. Matusz was charged with one run at the time, on Ryan Howard’s homer, but reliever Chris George allowed an inherited runner to score on Shane Victorino’s double with one out in the fifth inning. Josh Bell just doubled with two

Good stuff in the first (updated)

CLEARWATER, Fla. - I figured you could use some positive news beyond Koji Uehara being scheduled to throw on Thursday. I’m starting to feel like Debbie Downer. Jake Fox took over the team lead with six RBIs when he doubled in the first inning to score Randy Winn. Josh Bell followed with a sacrifice fly for a 2-0 lead against Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels. Justin

More on the health issues

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter said Derrek Lee’s right wrist is “about the same at the very best” before revealing that the first baseman is visiting a hand specialist today. Nothing is imminent regarding Lee’s debut with the Orioles. On the plus side, his thumb is fine. “It’s nothing to the surgery side. That feels great,” Showalter said. “I don’t want to say tendinitis

Lee seeing specialist, Roberts has back spasms

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter dropped a few injury nuggets on reporters as batting practice ended. I’ll send quotes later. Derrek Lee is seeing a hand specialist today in Sarasota because of soreness in his right wrist area. Lee was restricted to hitting off a tee and soft toss this morning. Brian Roberts couldn’t work out today because of back spasms. They apparently flared

Orioles lineup

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Here’s the Orioles’ lineup for today’s game vs. the Phillies: Randy Winn CF Brendan Harris 2B Nolan Reimold LF Jake Fox DH Josh Bell 3B Brandon Snyder 1B Nick Green RF Craig Tatum C Robert Andino SS Justin Duchscherer RHP Brian Matusz, Michael Gonzalez and Jim Johnson also will pitch today.

Injury non-updates

SARASOTA, Fla.- It feels like I just left the Ed Smith Stadium complex about 45 minutes ago, and I’m already back here. I’ll be heading to Clearwater for today’s game against the Phillies. I may take a few Sun reporters with me, just for laughs. The Orioles haven’t posted their lineup. Cesar Izturis won’t make the trip, which must be causing the delay. He apparently

Fit to be tied

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles and Yankees played to a 0-0 tie in front of 8,471, the largest baseball crowd in Ed Smith Stadium history. The Orioles pulled their goalie, but still couldn’t score. Manager Buck Showalter approved of Zach Britton’s outing, but noted that the left-hander needs to throw more first-pitch strikes. “That’ll come,” Showalter said. “Stayed off the sweet part of the bat

Britton relaxed, Diaz in house

SARASOTA, Fla. - Cameron Diaz took her seat beside the Yankees’ dugout at exactly 8:25 p.m., but who’s counting? If she looks over at me one more time, I’m going to start getting uncomfortable. Kevin Gregg tossed a perfect fourth inning, striking out one. He hasn’t allowed a run in three innings this spring. Jeremy Accardo survived a one-out double by Melky Mesa in the

Nerves? What nerves? (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla.- Young left-hander Zach Britton looks calm and composed on the mound tonight. It doesn’t matter that he’s facing the Yankees before a standing-room-only crowd in a game that’s airing on MASN. Britton admitted to a case of the jitters after his first appearance against the Phillies, but he mowed down the Yankees on 13 pitches in the first inning. He retired Derek Jeter

VandenHurk not concerned about control

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles lost to the Boston Red Sox, 6-5, in Fort Myers. Yamaico Navarro singled off Mark Worrell to score Oscar Tejada with the winning run in the bottom of the ninth. Steven Bumbry, the son of former Orioles center fielder Al Bumbry, nearly broke a 5-5 tie in the top of the ninth with a one-out single into left field, but

Duchscherer and Matusz still ready (updated again)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Justin Duchscherer is still scheduled to start tomorrow’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater. And left-hander Brian Matusz will follow. Duchscherer had his debut delayed last week by a sore left hip, but he’s ready to take the ball tomorrow. “I threw BP the other day and it felt good,” he said. “I’m excited. It’s been a while. It’s been almost

Rough first inning for Tillman (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Chris Tillman got roughed up in the first inning today in Fort Myers, allowing three runs and four hits to fall behind 3-0 to the Boston Red Sox. Kevin Youkilis had an RBI single off Tillman, and J.D. Drew singled to drive in two more runs. Matt Angle led off the top of the first with a single and stole second. He

Working on their night moves (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles will play under the lights tonight at the new Ed Smith Stadium. They’ll also play under a blue sky this afternoon in Fort Myers. It’s a split-squad kind of day, and you can be sure that the A-Team will stay back in Sarasota for the game versus the Yankees that will air on MASN. I thought about attending both games,

Final thoughts on 3-0 loss

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Armando Gabino tossed a perfect eighth inning, and the Orioles’ bullpen held the Minnesota Twins to one run over the last five innings. Unfortunately for the Orioles, they managed only four hits and were blanked, 3-0. The Orioles were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position. Here are some post-game quotes from manager Buck Showalter: On Jeremy Guthrie: “He gave up a

Guthrie talks about outing

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Wynn Pelzer’s pickoff throw in the seventh inning got past Brandon Snyder and nailed Twins first base coach Jerry White on the left shin. White hit the ground hard and stayed on his back as trainers rushed to his aid. He eventually was helped up and finished the inning before the Twins replaced him. Pelzer allowed a hit and walked two

VandenHurk struggles with control

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Twins scored once off Rick VandenHurk in three innings, increasing their lead to 3-0 in the bottom of the seventh. VandenHurk walked four batters, which overshadows everything else today. He needs to find the plate if he’s got a chance to make this team. VandenHurk threw only eight strikes among his 19 pitches in the fourth inning, but he didn’t

Showalter rushes to Jones’ defense (updated)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Twins used a two-out double by Danny Valencia and a soft single to center field by Luke Hughes to take a 1-0 lead against Jeremy Guthrie. Guthrie threw 18 pitches, 13 for strikes. On consecutive plays in the first inning, Josh Bell made a nice stop on a sharp ground ball at first base and dug out a low throw

Duchscherer slated to start Tuesday (updated)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Assuming that Justin Duchscherer’s hip remains pain-free, the right-hander will start Tuesday’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater. Manager Buck Showalter confirmed that Duchscherer will work the first inning. He also could return for the second if his pitch count is down and he isn’t forced to sit for a prolonged stretch while the Orioles bat. “I’m going to let

Twins lineup and looking ahead

FORT MYERS, Fla. - It’s been raining in Fort Myers, and one of the locals says more precipitation is on the way. Could arrive around noon. For the Twins: Denard Span CF Tsuyoshi Nishioka 2B Danny Valencia 3B Luke Hughes DH Jeff Bailey 1B Jason Repko RF Rene Tosoni LF Steve Holm C Alexi Casilla SS Brian Duensing LHP Sean Burnett, former Oriole Jim Hoey,

Lee won’t play tomorrow

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles first baseman Derrek Lee will stay back in camp today and hit soft tosses in the indoor cage. He doesn’t expect to debut tomorrow because of “general soreness” in his right wrist area, and he won’t project when he’ll enter the starting lineup. “I don’t want to put days on it,” he said. “I probably made that mistake the first time.

Today’s lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’m minutes away from getting back in my car and heading to Fort Myers for today’s game against the Minnesota Twins. For the Orioles: Randy Winn RF Robert Andino 2B Nolan Reimold LF Jake Fox DH Josh Bell 1B Felix Pie CF Brendan Harris 3B Craig Tatum C Cesar Izturis SS Jeremy Guthrie RHP Rick VandenHurk will follow Guthrie to the mound.

Post-tie comments from Showalter

The Orioles and Red Sox played to a 4-4 tie in 10 innings. If you predicted that outcome, go to the window and collect your money. Josh Bell drew a two-out walk, which is newsworthy when you consider that he walked twice and struck out 53 times in 53 games with the Orioles last season. He took a close 2-2 pitch, fouled a ball off

Fox isn’t outfoxed

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jake Fox has taken this game into extra innings. Fox belted a solo home run off Red Sox reliever Matt Fox, giving him three bombs this spring. You can’t sneak a fastball past this guy. When will they learn? Left-hander Chris George is pitching for the Orioles in the top of the 10th inning, and he just struck out the first batter

Bergesen talks about today’s start (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen took the good from today’s start at Ed Smith Stadium, which meant overlooking the three runs and six hits he allowed to the Red Sox. He was stretched out to three innings and 46 pitches. He got in his work. Bergesen immediately brought up the three runs he allowed in the second inning after getting the first two outs and

Bergesen labors vs. Red Sox

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brad Bergesen has allowed three runs and six hits in three innings against the Boston Red Sox, who kept most of their regulars in Fort Myers. Bergesen has also walked a batter and struck out two. The Red Sox did all their scoring with two outs in the second inning on Drew Sutton’s double, Jose Iglesias’ RBI single, a walk and Oscar

A little pregame Showalter and Duchscherer

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter said there’s “nothing definitive” regarding first baseman Derrek Lee, who’s dealing with some soreness above his right wrist. “He feels a little better than he did yesterday,” Showalter said. “We’ll see how he is tomorrow. We don’t plan on taking him to Fort Myers tomorrow. At the very earliest Monday, but it may be later than that. It’s not

Updates on Lee, Matusz and Duchscherer (with quotes)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter confirmed that first baseman Derrek Lee won’t travel to Fort Myers tomorrow. The earliest he can debut is Monday, but nothing is certain at this point. Lee is dealing with some mild soreness above his right wrist. Brian Matusz threw a bullpen session today and is convinced that he’ll be ready to start on Tuesday after having a

Today’s lineup (w/Red Sox)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Here’s the Orioles’ lineup for today’s game against the Red Sox: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Luke Scott LF Vladimir Guerrero DH Mark Reynolds 3B Adam Jones CF J.J. Hardy SS Matt Wieters C Joe Mahoney 1B Brad Bergesen RHP For the Red Sox: Jacoby Ellsbury CF Oscar Tejeda 2B Carl Crawford LF Will Middlebrooks 3B Juan Carlos Linares DH Mark

Once through the rotation

SARASOTA, Fla. - We’ve come full circle today. Brad Bergesen is back on the mound. Bergesen started the first exhibition game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Bradenton, and he’ll face the Boston Red Sox this afternoon in Sarasota. I wonder if Red Sox fans will take over Ed Smith Stadium? The players have another meeting this morning, so the clubhouse is closed to the media

Final thoughts on 6-2 win

LAKELAND, Fla. - Break up the Orioles! They won again today, getting home runs from Nolan Reimold and Jake Fox in a 6-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers. Left-hander Mike Ballard, who will be part of the minor league camp, made the trip here and pitched the last two innings. Ryan Strieby hit a solo homer with two outs in the ninth to complete the

Sly as a Fox (updated)

Jake Fox hit his second spring home run, a two-run shot off Tigers right-hander Alberto Alburquerque in the eighth inning. Orioles 5, Tigers 1. Fox came into the game batting .571. He was 0-for-3 before this at-bat. Robert Andino walked before Fox stepped to the plate and deposited a ball on the hill beyond the left field fence. Nolan Reimold walked and Josh Bell reached

Reimold goes way deep (updated)

LAKELAND, Fla. - The Orioles were being shut out on one hit going into the top of the sixth inning, but not any more. Randy Winn singled and Brendan Harris walked to open the inning. Charlie Furbush retired the next two batters, but Nolan Reimold launched the first pitch he saw over the left field fence to give the Orioles a 3-1 lead. Reimold got

Orioles trail, Arrieta speaks, Matusz heals

LAKELAND, Fla. - It started to rain in the top of the fifth, but it’s already clearing up as we approach the bottom half of the inning. Welcome to Florida. The Orioles still trail the Tigers 1-0 as David Riske enters the game. They have one hit - Cesar Izturis’ bloop single - and back-to-back walks by Josh Bell and Nick Green in the fifth.

Arrieta completes two innings

Jake Arrieta is charged with one run and two hits in two innings. He also walked two batters. Arrieta threw 33 pitches, 17 for strikes. The Tigers’ run scored when shortstop Nick Green misplayed Brennan Boesch’s pop-up for a hit with two outs in the first inning. Detroit starter Rick Porcello retired the first eight Orioles before Cesar Izturis’ bloop single into left field. Randy

Lee won’t play Saturday, Matusz has wart removed (updated)

LAKELAND, Fla. - First baseman Derrek Lee’s debut with the Orioles is being delayed because of some mild tenderness in his right wrist. Lee’s thumb is fine, according to manager Buck Showalter. The wrist is a little tender, so the club will give him another day and re-evaluate him on Sunday. Lee hit soft toss today. Also, Brian Matusz had the wart removed from his

Duchscherer update and Tigers lineup

LAKELAND, Fla. - Justin Duchscherer arrived at the Ed Smith Stadium complex as I was heading to my car for the drive to Lakeland. Duchscherer said he’s having a “light day” today. Sounds like he might play catch and receive more treatment on his left hip. Duchscherer hopes to throw live batting practice tomorrow. He threw off the half mound and regular mound yesterday. Assuming

Today’s lineup

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’ve got the Garmin warmed up and I’m ready for the long drive to Lakeland for today’s game against the Tigers. Here’s the Orioles’ lineup: Randy Winn CF Brendan Harris 1B Felix Pie RF Jake Fox DH Nolan Reimold LF Josh Bell 3B Nick Green SS Craig Tatum C Cesar Izturis 2B Jake Arrieta RHP Ryan Drese, Jason Berken and David Riske

Matusz says finger is “not a huge issue”

SARASOTA, Fla. - Orioles left-hander Brian Matusz says he developed a wart on his middle finger “a couple months ago” and thought it might be a blister. He’s never had one before and alerted head athletic trainer Richie Bancells after reporting to camp with the other pitchers. “It’s not bothering me,” Matusz said. “It doesn’t affect me at all. It’s on the side of my

Showalter talks after 2-0 loss (w/note)

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’m still trying to catch my breath after this newsy day, which included significant health updates on Justin Duchscherer, Koji Uehara, Derrek Lee and Brian Matusz. No Mitch Atkins update? What the heck? Matusz will fly to Philadelphia early tomorrow morning to have a wart removed from his left middle finger. Manager Buck Showalter pointed to the exact location while trying not

Matusz leaving team for procedure

SARASOTA, Fla. - Brian Matusz is flying to Philadelphia at 6 a.m. tomorrow morning to have a wart removed from the middle finger on his pitching hand. He’s expected back in Sarasota later that night. Is that enough health news for one day? Manager Buck Showalter told reporters about Matusz’s procedure following a 2-0 loss to the Twins. The wart is located on the side

Matusz talks about his outing (updated twice)

SARASOTA, Fla. - We’re still scoreless through six innings. Josh Bell doubled off the fence in right-center field leading off the bottom of the sixth, but he never made it past second base. Left fielder Jason Repko made a lunging catch to rob Nick Markakis and hold Bell at second. The wind knocked down Bell’s ball. It looked like a home run when it left

Matusz tosses two scoreless (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Left-hander Brian Matusz didn’t allow a hit in two scoreless innings today against the Minnesota Twins at Ed Smith Stadium. Matusz walked one and struck out two. He went to a full count with Denard Span leading off the first inning and Jason Repko leading off the second, but he retired both batters. Matusz threw 35 pitches, 20 for strikes. His fastball

Uehara speaks (through his interpreter)

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles aren’t concerned about Koji Uehara, and neither is their reliever. Uehara received a cortisone injection in his right elbow today because of some soreness. He’ll be shut down for several days. Uehara thinks he’ll be ready to pitch again in a week. “It’s not even serious. I’m not concerned about it,” he said through interpreter Jiwon Bang. “I’m just being

Uehara shut down with sore elbow (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Reliever Koji Uehara, who was scheduled to pitch today, has come down with a sore right elbow and will receive a cortisone shot this afternoon. Uehara will be shut down for the next few days and re-evaluated. The Orioles don’t believe it’s anything serious, but it counts as another health issue in spring training. Uehara has been sidelined with sore hamstrings the

Duchscherer makes progress, Lee targeting Saturday

SARASOTA, Fla. - Justin Duchscherer played catch again this morning and threw from the half mound. He’s now moved over to a regular mound. Duchscherer is making significant progress from the hip soreness that kept him off the field Saturday. Also, Derrek Lee is penciled into Saturday’s lineup. Josh Bell still projects as the third baseman at Triple-A Norfolk if he doesn’t make the club

Bell starting at first base

SARASOTA, Fla. - Josh Bell played first base in the ninth inning of Tuesday’s home exhibition opener. Today, Bell will make his first start there. For the Orioles: Brian Roberts 2B Nick Markakis RF Luke Scott LF Vladimir Guerrero DH Mark Reynolds 3B Adam Jones CF Matt Wieters C J.J. Hardy SS Josh Bell 1B Brian Matusz LHP

Fox talks about Britton

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Minnesota Twins are coming here from Fort Myers. Better that they make the trip than me. The lineup hasn’t been posted, and the Orioles closed the clubhouse to the media at 8:30 a.m. for a players association meeting. Bobby Bonilla and Phil Bradley are in the house. Left-hander Brian Matusz is starting for the Orioles today. Adrian Rosario, Kevin Gregg, Koji

Orioles hang on for 6-5 win

CLEARWATER, Fla. - The Phillies homered twice off left-hander Nick Bierbrodt in the bottom of the ninth, and another run scored on Chris Jakubauskas’ wild pitch, but the tying run was stranded on second base. Orioles 6, Phillies 5. Manager Buck Showalter must have really wanted this win. He removed Bierbrodt with one out and a runner on third, and his last two relievers were

Game update and Tillman

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Brian Bass pitched the eighth inning for the Phillies, and his former team loaded the bases with no outs on singles by Robert Andino, Brandon Snyder and Pedro Florimon. Matt Angle’s bouncer to first scored Andino for a 6-1 lead. Michael Gonzalez and Jim Johnson each threw a scoreless inning. Pedro Viola is pitching the bottom of the eighth, and he just

Britton battled Phillies and nerves

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Matt Wieters has three singles and two RBIs today. Felix Pie contributed a run-scoring double in the seventh, and Wieters delivered pinch-runner Nick Green for a 5-1 lead, though an interference call on the third baseman took away the RBI. Zach Britton walked into the hallway outside the visiting clubhouse, saw the five reporters waiting for him and brought up the elephant

Fox on the run (updated)

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Jake Fox homered, singled and drove in two runs in yesterday’s home exhibition opener. Apparently, the bus ride didn’t cool him off. Fox has singled twice today as the starting catcher. He played first base yesterday. Joe Mahoney is starting at first today, and he singled to right field in the fourth inning. Left-hander Zach Britton was a little too amped up

Tillman shaky but resilient (updated)

CLEARWATER, Fla - Chris Tillman completed two innings today, and he got quite a workout. Tillman threw 42 pitches, 25 for strikes. He allowed one run and three hits, walked one and struck out one. The Phillies threatened in the second when John Mayberry Jr. doubled with one out and Brian Schneider walked. With Mark Worrell warming in the bullpen, Tillman got a fly ball

Talking Tillman and Samuel (updated)

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Chris Tillman retired the first two batters he faced in the first inning, striking out Jimmy Rollins, but he’s behind 1-0 as we move to the top of the second. Raul Ibanez singled with two outs and scored on Ryan Howard’s double to right. The wind might have knocked down the ball and prevented it from landing on the hill beyond the

Updates on Duchscherer, Lee and Atkins

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter just arrived in Clearwater after staying back to watch Justin Duchscherer throw off flat ground and further test his left hip. Showalter indicated that Duchscherer got through the session without incident and could throw off a mound Friday. “He had a good day,” Showalter said. “Threw on flat ground, stretched it out. We’ll see how he feels the

Today’s lineups

SARASOTA, Fla. - I’m heading to Clearwater later this morning. Here’s the Orioles’ lineup: Randy Winn RF Felix Pie CF Josh Bell 3B Matt Wieters DH Nolan Reimold LF Jake Fox C Brendan Harris 2B Joe Mahoney 1B Cesar Izturis SS Chris Tillman RHP Left-hander Zach Britton will follow Tillman to the mound. Left-hander Michael Gonzalez also will pitch today. Mahoney said he’s eager to

Showalter time

SARASOTA, Fla. - Manager Buck Showalter gave today a passing grade. A nice ceremony before the first pitch to celebrate a refurbished Ed Smith Stadium, and an inspired power display that triggered a 12-6 victory over the Rays. Who could complain? “I’m glad that the weather held out for us,” Showalter said. “It was a lot of fun. You couldn’t have scripted it much better.

Markakis speaks

SARASOTA, Fla. - Today’s attendance: 7,497. That’s a record for Ed Smith Stadium. Jason Berken gave up two runs in the top of the seventh inning while I was waiting for Nick Markakis in the clubhouse. That’s what happens when I leave my seat. The Orioles held a 10-6 lead in the bottom of the seventh until Brandon Snyder doubled to score two runs. Make

Guthrie talks about today’s outing

SARASOTA, Fla. - Here are some quotes from Jeremy Guthrie, who retired all six batters he faced today: On his outing: “Everything felt like it left off at the end of last season, so that’s good. I haven’t thrown a strike in five months, so it’s nice to go out there and be able to do that. Work ahead. The command wasn’t tremendous, but I

Markakis having big day (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - First base coach Wayne Kirby walked over to Nick Markakis this morning and asked whether the right fielder was ready to go to work after he stayed back in camp yesterday while the Orioles opened their exhibition schedule in Brandenton. Markakis responded with a nod and a fist bump. Boy, was he ready. Markakis has homered twice, singled and driven in four

Fox and Markakis tee off in second (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Jake Fox just unloaded on Andy Sonnanstine, figuring that the Rays’ starter is fair game today. Fox, batting ninth today, homered to left-center field on the first pitch thrown to him. Orioles 5, Rays 0. Matt Wieters flied to left before Fox stepped to the plate. Fox is starting at first base today. He’s trying to make the club as the backup

Markakis, Guerrero and Jones homer in first

SARASOTA, Fla. - I almost forgot that a game was being played today. Brian Roberts singled off Rays starter Andy Sonnanstine in his first spring at-bat, and Nick Markakis followed with a home run to right field on a 1-1 pitch. One out later, Vladimir Guerrero crushed the first pitch thrown to him. The ball cleared the left-center field fence in about three seconds. Orioles

Lee: “I don’t foresee it being too much longer”

SARASOTA, Fla. - Derrek Lee took batting practice for the third straight day as he draws closer to playing in his first exhibition game. Lee can’t pinpoint when he’ll debut for the Orioles, but his surgically repaired right thumb is responding well to the BP sessions and fielding drills. “Hopefully soon,” he said. “Today was the third day in a row hitting off coaches and

Waiting on Lee

SARASOTA, Fla. - A light rain is falling at the newly refurbished Ed Smith Stadium as the Orioles take batting practice. Not a drop the entire time we’ve been here until today. Naturally. Manager Buck Showalter hasn’t provided an exact date when first baseman Derrek Lee will make his Orioles’ debut in an exhibition game. He’s mostly leaving it up to Lee, who continues to

Duchscherer feeling fine this morning (updated)

SARASOTA, Fla. - Justin Duchscherer remains encouraged by the condition of his left hip this morning. “Everything was OK yesterday,” he said. “It’s one of those weird things where guys who have surgery and come back might have a day or two where they just feel concerned, worried. So far, since the other day, everything’s felt fine. I threw off flat ground, and they have

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