Orioles/Angels lineups & pregame tidbits

*Jason Berken was seen by noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. Lewis Yocum yesterday and the initial report is that there is no structural damage in his right elbow region, which has been giving the right-hander nagging discomfort while pitching. Berken will fly see team orthopedist Dr. Wilckens tonight before flying back to Baltimore to undergo an MRA on Tuesday for more definitive results.

An MRA is like an MRI except dye is injected into the area for a better picture. It’s still early, but right now it looks like relatively positive news for Berken, who will be placed on the disabled list on Monday for pitcher Zach Britton.

*Matt Wieters is making his first career Major League start at first base today, a position he last played his freshman year of college. Wieters, who was also a pitcher at Georgia Tech, said he used to start the games at first base before serving as the team’s closer and was excited to change things up and play first base.

Craig Tatum is catching with Blake Davis making his first career start at third base. Given that Mark Reynolds is a little dinged up from taking a hit from Mike Trout at first base last night –rolling his left ankle in the process — Wieters presented the best option for manager Buck Showalter, who also considered Nolan Reimold and Josh Bell, both who are struggling mightily at the plate.

*Chris Davis (right shoulder) will report to the team’s spring facility in Sarasota to start rehabbing his injury. The expectation is he will be activated at the end of the month to

*A night removed from suffering his fifth blown save, Kevin Gregg –who has not recorded an out and faced at least five batters in each of his last two games — will remain as the team’s closer. When posed the question, Showalter said “Kevin is our option” and given that Jim Johnson is expected to be slotted into the rotation in September the Orioles don’t really have any other choice.

Johnson threw three innings last night and given the team’s upcoming schedule, which includes a doubleheader on Saturday, the Orioles can’t afford to not have him in relief for the next week. Look for the team to continue stretching Johnson out after that.

*Jeremy Guthrie threw a bullpen today and assuming all went well he’s likely in line for Wednesday’s start, which would put Alfredo Simon in line for Tuesday. But nothing has been finalized beyond Britton.

ORIOLES LINEUP
J.J. Hardy SS
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Matt Wieters 1B
Robert Andino 2B
Felix Pie LF
Craig Tatum C
Blake Davis 3B

Brian Matusz LHP

ANGELS LINEUP
Macier Izturis 3B
Peter Bourjos CF
Howie Kendrick 2B
Torii Hunter DH
Mark Trumbo 1B
vernon Wells LF
Erick Aybar SS
Mike Trout RF
Bobby Wilson C

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