Markakis expected to start in right field Wednesday (and note)

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter plans on starting Nick Markakis in right field Wednesday night against the New York Yankees at Ed Smith Stadium.

“We’ll see how he feels,” Showalter said.

Markakis served as the designated hitter today and went 1-for-5, singling on the first pitch thrown to him since March 1.

“It was good. He didn’t want to walk the last time. You could tell,” Showalter said.

“I didn’t run him 3-2 counts a couple times to get him through the day. His legs felt good. I’d like to graduate him to right field tomorrow. We’ll see how it goes.”

Jason Hammel will pitch in a minor league game Wednesday afternoon on one of the back fields. Wei-Yin Chen will pitch Thursday afternoon in the same location.

Chris Tillman will start Friday afternoon against State College of Florida.

Most of the regulars will play Wednesday night. The game will air on MASN.

Showalter continues to be impressed with Kevin Gausman, who made his second spring start today.

“He pitched well today, he pitched well all spring,” Showalter said. “He’s got some things he needs to finish off. He’ll leave here with a good idea of what those are now.

“He’s a solid kid. He has a good background. He came with somewhat of a grasp of the running game already, which is a real tribute to Alan (Dunn) and him. I’m glad he’s on our side.”

Gausman has a plus-fastball and changeup. The slider is a work in progress that Showalter described as “fine, very usable.”

“Like I’ve said, one to compete, two to win and three to dominate. On a given night, if he carries all three, he’s going to be tough. It’s made some improvements. I don’t want to say it doesn’t have to be too good, but I think he’s got the athleticism for it to get better and better.

“You can see why he was somebody who was coveted.”

Showalter resisted sending out Gausman early in camp, choosing instead to keep him around the veterans and giving him seven spring appearances.

“We felt like he was getting something out of it and he was competitive with it,” Showalter said “He didn’t seem like he was a fish out of water or over his head.

“I feel real good about the environment that I can put him in here with the team. I like our people and I like him being around them. And seeing why Hammel and (Miguel) Gonzalez and (Jim) Johnson and (Darren) O’Day and all those guys are so good. It was the same thing with Eduardo (Rodriguez) It really helps coaches down below. It’s one thing for them to hear it from them, it’s another thing for them to see it first-hand. It’s a clubhouse I like exposing them to. But he came with a lot of that, too.”

Note: The Orioles today announced that MASN will broadcast “The BUCKle Up Birds: An Underdog Story,” the club’s 2012 season highlight video. The program will debut on MASN at 10 p.m. Wednesday and will re-air at 6 p.m. on March 30 and 12:30 p.m. on April 5 before the Orioles’ home-opener against the Minnesota Twins at 3:05 p.m.

The movie, which was produced in-house by the award-winning Orioles’ productions department, is available for purchase at Highlights include both in-game footage and off-field interviews of key moments throughout the year, from dramatic wins to each of the six Orioles Legends Celebration Series unveilings. Additional bonus content found exclusively on the DVD includes footage from the Orioles’ post-game wild card celebration in Arlington.

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