Hearing from Showalter and Gonzalez before tonight’s game

Orioles manager Buck Showalter expressed confidence today that pitcher Miguel Gonzalez will be ready to come off the disabled list when his 15 days have expired.

Gonzalez went on the DL with a strained right groin muscle after leaving Tuesday’s start with one out in the fifth inning.

Gonzalez, who missed a start in 2012 with discomfort in his groin, told reporters that he feels the same today as he did a few days ago.

“I’m pretty sure that we were able to get through this one before because we had an off day to play with and we could wait the 10 days,” Showalter said. “Obviously, the schedule’s not cooperating. I think it’s just a little tick worse than the last one. I feel confident he’ll make the period. But watching him throw the last inning, it wasn’t going to work.

“We waited a couple days. Obviously, he’s worth waiting on. But it’s about Miguel right now and not the needs of the club. We’re actually in pretty good shape in the ‘pen considering there’s six guys and a four- and five-inning start. You can’t ask for much better.

“It’s one of those things where if you go out there and start testing it, you might set back the return day. But I’m real confident and they’re real confident that they know what they’re dealing with.”

Gonzalez said he’s “a little bummed” about going on the disabled list.

“I understand that it’s the right thing to do,” he said. “It’s not feeling any better. It’s still sore. As I walk I feel it, so I think we’ll just go from there and see what happens.

“You don’t want to be out longer than what you really need, but I understand we’re short one guy and we all know that Mike Wright is going to start Sunday and let’s go from there after that. We’ll see when my bullpen is going to be and I’m hoping for the best.”

Gonzalez spoke to infielder Ryan Flaherty, who twice went on the DL this season with a strained right groin, and also expressed confidence that he’ll be ready to pitch after 15 days.

“I talked to Flaherty and he had Stage 2 and I have Stage 1, so hoping I can be back before then and just be ready for the 15,” Gonzalez said.

Taking the full 15 days gives Gonzalez a better chance to fully recover.


“I think that’s why Buck did it, because he knows that if I feel ready I’m going to go out there and compete,” Gonzalez said. “We don’t want to rush it. Right now there’s no point in doing it. Just take our time and hopefully be ready in two weeks.”

Wright will be in the bullpen the next three nights before Showalter decides whether to start him on Sunday against the Yankees.

“We’ll see what Sunday brings. We’ve a lot of options in place,” Showalter said.

Chris Davis felt some cramping in his leg while leaving the batters box last night, but he’s in the lineup tonight as the designated hitter.

“He’s fine today,” Showalter said. “You always worry about that.”

Head athletic trainer Richie Bancells checked Davis in the dugout and Steve Pearce moved to the top step in case he was needed as a replacement.

“I wanted to make sure it was a cramp and not something else,” Showalter said. “I’ve seen those people call them cramps and thye end up being something else. I wanted to be a little cautious with him today. These guys try to drink as many fluids as they can.

“Remember when women and guys used to take salt tablets? Remember that? The stuff that they used to tell us to take. ‘Pound those salt tablets.’

“Can you imagine doing that and you wake up the next day? ‘I feel puffy.’

Kevin Gausman is starting tonight at Double-A Bowie. He doesn’t appear to be an option for Sunday at Camden Yards.

Gausman could make another start on his injury rehab assignment or the Orioles could activate him from the diabled list and option him. They want to continue stretching him out and building up his innings.

Scout Dean Albany and special assignment pitching instructor Ramon Martinez are in Bowie tonight.

Vice president of baseball operations Brady Anderson, left-hander Brian Matusz and second baseman Jonathan Schoop will fly to Baltimore this weekend. Matusz could be a day ahead of them after making one more appearance in an extended spring training game.

“Brady’s getting the best 60 times he’s ever gotten on Jonathan straight ahead,” Showalter said. “He’s just got to get the side to side stuff going.”

Schoop won’t be ready to play second base after returning to Baltimore this weekend.

“This is a little different than Matt (Wieters),” Showalter said. “We knew Matt was going out when we got through with the Miami series. We’re not there with Jon yet.

“I’ll say it again: This was a serious injury. We’ve got to get it right. There’s going to be some things that aren’t ever going to be the same, but if you do enough work around that... We’ve got guys playing in the NFL with the same injury. It’s just that you have to be diligent. We’ve got the right people around him, and obviously Jon.

“This is your career. If you stay on top of this, it won’t necessarily be a problem. Because the next step is a surgery that doesn’t necessarily have a good return on. It’s not like the ACL. A posterior cruciate ligament surgery does not have a good percentage of return on it. So this is big for Jon to get it right the first time.”

Former Orioles left-hander Erik Bedard, 36, announced his retirement today after making three starts at Single-A Rancho Cucamonga.

In a related story, Chris Tillman is starting tonight for the Orioles and Adam Jones is in center field.

Nice trade.

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