Notes on Means, Trumbo, Wilkerson (O’s win 8-7)

ANAHEIM, Calif. - The Orioles have not announced their starting pitchers yet for the San Diego series that begins Monday. Right-hander Tom Eshelman is expected to start Tuesday but manager Brandon Hyde said he doesn’t yet know about Monday.

That is where All-Star lefty John Means would be slated in the rotation, but he went on the injured list yesterday retroactive to July 25 with a left biceps strain.

Hyde did say today that Means will undergo further testing, but once again said he is not concerned long-term about Means, who is 8-6 with a 3.12 ERA.

Means-Delivers-Black-Sidebar.jpg“Means is getting an MRI but it’s a procedural thing,” Hyde said. “The medical people do not sound concerned, so I’m not sounding concerned.”

“It’s more of like a bicep tightness,” Means said. “I’ve been feeling it the past week or so. I felt it in the bullpen before my last outing (Wednesday at Arizona). I kind of cut that short. In the game in the third and fourth inning I started to feel it again. Like a dead-arm feeling.

“I’m going to miss one start and I’ll be good to go. I honestly probably could start again but it’s one of those things I don’t want lingering and want to attack as fast as I can. I want to finish the season healthy and strong.

“I tested it and it felt good. It’s just when I let loose a little bit, when I’m throwing max effort I just feel a little pull, but it’s going to be tight if I keep on throwing. So attack it now and not worry about it later.”

The Orioles’ original lineup for tonight underwent a small change. It’s the same nine in the same spots, but Jonathan Villar, originally listed to start at second base, is now the DH and Hanser Alberto goes from DH to second. Hyde said Villar has a sore leg.

Mark Trumbo has, at least temporarily, been shut down again. He was hitting .229 (8-for-35) in 10 games between Double-A Bowie and Triple-A Norfolk on his rehab assignment. But he has not played since Wednesday, when he went 1-for-3 with a homer for Norfolk.

“I think he is taking a break, to be honest with you,” said Hyde. “Little bit of a breather. I know he went deep a few days ago, but I just don’t he’s happy how everything is feeling. So he’s taking a little bit of a break with the knee, and that’s really all I know right now.”

But Hyde is quite hopeful Trumbo will return again.

“I want to believe so. Yeah, I think so,” Hyde said. “I expect he will. I just don’t know what the timetable is on it. Want to make sure he feels good about his knee before he comes up here.”

Stevie Wilkerson continues to garner attention after his save in the 16th inning on Friday night. Today he was a guest on MLB Network radio and was asked by the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown to provide his cap and the game ball. He did.

“I went there when I was 10 with my dad and brother and a baseball team,” Wilkerson said. “We were playing in a tournament. That’s pretty cool to have something up there, and I look forward to visiting soon as I can to take a peek.”

Wilkerson now has a 2.25 ERA in four games, but he will not become someone used more often as a pitcher.

“No. We’re going with the pitchers we have, and I hope I never have to use Stevie again, but you never know,” Hyde said. “The way this year is going, probably it will happen at some point,”

“He’s awesome and confident. Takes a really confident person to flip up 55 mph cheeseburgers up there. And not have any fear with the lead in the 16th inning and enjoy it. He’s got the perfect mentality to do something like that.”

They scored in the first: The Orioles have an early lead again tonight. Pedro Severino’s two-run single to center made it 2-0 in the top of the first. The Orioles have scored 21 runs in 26 innings in this series.

That lead didn’t last long: O’s right-hander Aaron Brooks got off to a rocky start, allowing a double by David Fletcher and a two-run homer by Mike Trout, and it was tied 2-2 in the first. Trout has 34 homers to lead the American League and has now hit 12 in his past 17 games.

O’s trail: David Fletcher’s two-run double down the left-field line gave Los Angeles a 4-2 lead in the second. Brooks threw 46 pitches through two frames.

More offense: The third inning ended in a 5-5 tie. The O’s briefly led 5-4 after a three-run third on Anthony Santander’s RBI double and Severino’s two-run homer to left. Severino has four RBIs already to tie his career high. But in the last of the third Shohei Ohtani’s 15th homer tied it up.

Smith out: Dwight Smith Jr. left tonight’s game before the last of the third with left calf soreness. Stevie Wilkerson went to center field and Santander moved from center to left, where Smith was playing.

O’s set MLB record: Jonathan Villar lined a homer into the right-field corner in the sixth as the O’s took a 6-5 lead. That blast also put the 2019 Orioles in the record book. They became the first team in major league history to hit two or more homers in 10 straight games.

Tied again: Miguel Castro replaced Brooks and allowed a homer to the first batter he faced, Albert Pujols. It was the veteran’s 100th homer at Angel Stadium. It’s 6-6 in the sixth.

Late lead: Hanser Alberto’s one-out single off Ty Buttrey put two runs across in the eighth to put the Orioles ahead 8-6.

Late drama: Matt Thaiss scored on David Fletcher’s one-out single off Mychal Givens in the ninth inning. Thaiss was safe at second when Richie Martin whiffed on an attempted tag after fielding a grounder, and Luis Rengifo was safe at first on the fielder’s choice. Thaiss appeared to be running outside the baseline on the play, stepping into the infield grass to elude Martin’s tag. But Givens struck out Mike Trout and, after an intentional walk to Shohei Ohtani, got Justin Upton to pop up to end it. The Orioles win 8-7.

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