A few pregame notes from Dunedin

DUNEDIN, Fla. - Orioles manager Buck Showalter said right-hander Ryan Webb is getting closer to pitching in a game and it could happen next week.

The Orioles reliever has been recieving treatment on his left knee.

“Webb threw today and felt a lot better. He’s close to throwing a bullpen,” Showalter said.

Meanwhile, Paul Janish has been fully cleared for baseball activities and will probably get some at-bats at designated hitter on Saturday against the Puerto Rico development team and also in Sunday’s B game. He could DH every inning to catch up on getting at-bats. He may even play a few innings in the field.

Showalter said pitcher Bud Norris is not on even on the injury report after mentioning his back had briefly flared up recently. The concern level there is very low.

britton-pitching-orange-front-sidebar.jpgChris Tillman and Tommy Hunter will pitch in the game against Puerto Rico on Saturday and Caleb Joseph may also play in that game. Kevin Gausman and Zach Britton are scheduled to pitch Sunday in the B game at Ed Smith Stadium.

Britton has said he wants to throw some two-inning outings during spring training and one may come in the game on Sunday. It will give him a chance to get stretched out a bit and also work on his curveball some.

Ubaldo Jimenez is making his third O’s spring start today and Showalter was asked if it’s too early to be concered about the right-hander who takes a 16.20 ERA into this outing.

“Probably if they did it (struggled) the whole way. I’ve had real quality pitchers that did do that all spring,” Showalter said. “You had to take them on a back field to get their pitch count up. Then the season starts and they had their normal year. I’m pretty happy with our pitchers as a whole, especially the health factor, knock on wood.”

Brian Matusz will get a start on Saturday in Sarasota against Tampa Bay and be followed to the mound by Darren O’Day, Wesley Wright, Tim Berry and Logan Verrett.

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