Orioles claim Pedro Severino off waivers

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles have tossed another competitor into the catching mix today, claiming Pedro Severino off waivers from the Nationals and designating infielder Stevie Wilkerson for assignment.

Severino, 25, is out of options and the Nationals were trying to pass him through waivers.

The move gives the Orioles six catchers in camp and 35 players overall. Wilkerson already had been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk and was on the minor league side.

Severino Tag Play at  Plate Nats Sidebar.jpgA defense-first player in his four major league seasons, Severino has thrown out 36 percent of runners attempting to steal and is a career 187/.273/.287 hitter in 287 plate appearances. His plus arm made him a potential successor to Matt Wieters in D.C., but he struggled last summer and his stock plummeted.

Baseball America ranked Severino among the Nationals’ top 16 prospects between 2013-17. He batted .168/.254/.247 last year in 70 games and 213 plate appearances.

The Orioles have three catchers on their 40-man roster, including Chance Sisco and Austin Wynns.

Sisco got off to a hot start at the plate in spring training and is slashing .300/.475/.700 with four home runs and 11 RBIs in 13 games, but Severino’s arrival could push him to Norfolk. Wynns has been sidelined with a strained left oblique, limiting him to eight at-bats, and he just resumed taking batting practice yesterday, making him a candidate for the injured list or an option.

Severino was 9-for-21 this spring, but the Nationals are carrying Yan Gomes and Kurt Suzuki.

The Orioles’ camp roster also includes Jesús Sucre, whose didn’t exercise the opt-out date on his minor league deal yesterday and made the trip to Dunedin. He hadn’t been told that he made the club.

Carlos Pérez and Andrew Susac also remain on the spring roster.

Wilkerson appeared in 16 games with the Orioles last season in a utility role and batted .174/.224/.239.

Here’s the Twins lineup for tonight’s game, which includes a couple of former Orioles:

Max Kepler RF
Ehire Adrianza SS
Nelson Cruz DH
Eddie Rosario LF
C.J. Cron 1B
Marwin Gonzalez 3B
Jonathan Schoop 2B
Jason Castro C
Byron Buxton CF

José Berríos RHP

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