DUNEDIN, Fla. - Chris Tillman will make his first Grapefruit League start on Tuesday against the Twins in Fort Myers. He’s thrown a couple of simulated games.
Manager Buck Showalter has been shielding his main starters from division teams and the Twins, who provide the opposition on opening day at Camden Yards. With Tillman taking the mound on Tuesday, it’s safe to assume that he won’t debut in the regular season until the Orioles travel to Houston.
Continuing to look ahead at the exhibition schedule, Bundy and Mike Wright Jr. will pitch Monday against the Pirates in Bradenton. Miguel Castro and Nestor Cortes Jr. share Wednesday’s game against the Yankees in Sarasota. Gausman starts Thursday against the Cardinals in Jupiter and Cashner starts next Friday against the Mets in Port St. Lucie.
Wright gets the ball on March 17 against the Blue Jays in Sarasota.
The Orioles scored three runs in the ninth inning today, but they lost to the Blue Jays 8-5 at Dunedin Stadium.
Engelb Vielma had a two-run triple and scored on Andrew Susac’s sacrifice fly. Left-hander Tim Mayza tried to fool Vielma with a breaking ball after getting ahead with fastballs and regretted the decision.
Castro followed up his start in a B game by going three innings today and allowing one run and two hits with two walks and a strikeout. Josh Donaldson had an RBI single in the first after Curtis Granderson’s leadoff double.
“I liked the way that, he had the first inning and got right back and I thought he ended up having a good outing in the body of work,” Showalter said.
“It’s that time of year where there are some empty lockers showing up in there and people get a little, there’s some anxiety and stuff that sometimes shows itself on the field. That isn’t the case with him. He isn’t paying any attention to it. I think that has been the case the last few days with some other guys.
“Some guys, it takes them to another level. Some guys, it kind of weighs on them out here. There’s a little too much emotion going on. And what you’ve got to decide is when that kind of subsides and say they make the club or something, if it kind of gets back, but that’s part of it.”
Castro’s knees and back no longer are an issue. He’s healthy and making a bid for the final spot in the rotation.
“He’s been feeling great,” Showalter said. “He’s been doing everything.”