August 2011

Arrieta done for the season

Orioles right-hander Jake Arrieta will undergo season-ending surgery to remove the bone spur in his right elbow on Friday in California.

The procedure has been a near-certainty since Arrieta was put on the disabled list August 1 and it was reaffirmed after he had a CT scan and MRI arthogram (which involves contrast dye) with noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. Lewis Yocum in Los Angelos earlier today.

The only other option for Arrieta –who is experiencing pain in the area and has struggle with his command — would have been to get Cortisone shots in the area frequently during the season, but the right-hander said in a text message he didn’t want to “mask an injury” and would prefer to just have the spur removed.

The full recovery time is 2 1/2 months and, given the surgery’s timing, Arrieta will be able to have a normal offseason throwing program and is expected to be a full-go for next year’s Spring Training.

The 25-year-old Arrieta went 10-8 –and is still the team leader in wins – with a 5.05 ERA in 22 games.

Orioles/White Sox lineups and pregame tidbits

*Vladimir Guerrero is out of the lineup today, a decision Buck Showalter said was made because the aging slugger needed rest and had nothing to do with his wrist or overall health. Guerrero confirmed that he feels fine and respected Showalter’s decision. Nolan Reimold will be DHing instead, batting eighth.

*Zach Britton threw long toss today, felt good and is scheduled to pitch in Bowie on Sunday. If Britton then makes another possible rehab start on Monday, it would be in Class Single-A Frederick. Showalter said Britton has been responding well to the anti-inflammatory medicine he’s been given. Jo-Jo Reyes is still scheduled to make a spot start in place of Britton on Sunday against the Tigers.

*Jake Arrieta got an Arthigram MRI and CT scan today in California and will decide with Dr. Lewis Yocum, later today or tomorrow if he should get season-ending surgery to remove a bone spur in his right elbow. The surgery would be done on Friday, if Dr. Yocum decides it should be done.

*Cesar Izturis is traveling to Sarasota today. He is currently on the 15-day DL with a left groin strain

ORIOLES LINEUP

Felix Pie LF
J.J. Hardy SS
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Matt Wieters C
Mark Reynolds 3B
Chris Davis 1B
Nolan Reimold DH
Robert Andino 2B

RHP Tommy Hunter

WHITE SOX LINEUP

Juan Pierre LF
Omar Vizquel SS
Paul Konerko DH
Carlos Quentin RF
A.J. Pierzynski C
Alex Rios CF
Adam Dunn 1B
Gordon Beckham 2B
Brent Morel 3B

RHP Philip Humber

Showalter tossed

Orioles manager Buck Showalter was ejected two outs into the bottom of the fifth inning Tuesday night for arguing with third base umpire Phil Cuzzi’s call on Nick Markakis’ steal attempt.

In a four-run hole to start the inning, the Orioles scored three runs off White Sox starter Gavin Floyd –including Markakis’ RBI single – and looked poised to add to that number with runners on first and second and one out. Markakis broke for third base on the Floyd’s first pitch to cleanup hitter Vladimir Guerrero and while television replays clearly showed his hand sliding in underneath Brent Morel’s tag Cuzzi called Markakis out.

The usually reserved Markakis stood up and started yelling at Cuzzi for several minutes before walking off, while Showalter jogged out to third base to continue the heated discussion and was ejected not longer after.

It was the second ejection of the season for Showalter, who was also tossed in July 10’s game at Boston, and the Orioles skipper was forced to watch the rest of the inning away from the dugout. Guerrero grounded out to end the inning and keep Chicago’s lead intact,

Orioles/White Sox lineups & pregame tidbits

*As expected Chris Davis is back in the lineup for the first time since Thursday. Davis took some early swings in the cage and his right shoulder is good to go.

*Reliever Jason Berken joined the team around 8 pm last night and is available in relief. Berken was recalled when Cesar Izturis (groin strain) was put back on the disabled list prior to Monday’s game.  Izturis had an MRI done today, which revealed no new complications to his groin strain and right now it looks like the minimum 15 day period.

* Jake Arrieta will fly to California tonight and meet with Dr. Lewis Yocum tomorrow morning to have his right elbow examined. Arrieta is leaning toward getting season-ending surgery to remove the bone spur in his elbow, but will wait and see what Yocum has to say. If he does get the surgery, it’s scheduled for the 12th.

*Manager Buck Showalter confirmed he has thought about shuffling the lineup -most notably taking Vladimir Guerrero out of the cleanup spot — but he’s decided against it for a few reasons. One of those is he doesn’t think the Orioles have a lot of better options, meaning he’s not fond of moving guys like Mark Reynolds and Adam Jones out of their current spots.  As Showalter reminded reporters the team has a whole host of problems and the lineup isn’t among their most pressing.

*There are still tentative plans to make Jim Johnson a starter although that might not come about until sometime next month.  Johnson could join the team’s rotation –which could be a six-man — in September and his workload, which leads all American League relievers in innings, isn’t a big factor right now.

ORIOLES LINEUP

J.J. Hardy SS
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Chris Davis 1B
Mark Reynolds 3B
Matt Wieters C
Felix Pie LF
Robert Andino 2B

LHP Jo-Jo Reyes

WHITE SOX LINEUP

Juan Pierre LF
Alexei Ramirez SS
Paul Konerko DH
Carlos Quentin RF
A.J. Pierzinski C
Alex Rios CF
Brent Lillibridge 1B
Gordon Beckham 2B
Brent Morel 3B

Gavin Floyd RHP

Bell on his night

It’s no secret that Josh Bell has struggled at third base and that was the case again for most of Monday night.  With the score tied in the eighth inning, the Sox got a go-ahead RBI from Alex Rios, who laced a ball past Bell and into left field.

The play was one Bell should have gotten to, and he admitted it post-game.

“You got to knock it down, you got to make the plays,” said Bell, who was also charged with an error in the sixth and botched a ball that led to two runs in Sunday’s loss.

Asked if he felt he’s better than he’s showing, Bell agreed that his play at third base –which has left much to be desired — is far worse than he’s capable of defensively.

“You can’t make excuses,” said Bell, who called the Rios ball just a bad read on his part. “There’s no way to put it other than you got to make the plays and you got to help your team win. I felt like I didn’t really do that [Monday night].”

Manager Buck Showalter, who singled out Bell’s impressive play on a bunt earlier in the game as one of the best he’s seen, said he aid he would take both things into account when evaluating the 24-year-old.

“He’s capable of better, but had a couple good at-bats tonight and made some plays,” Showalter said of Bell, who went 2-for-4 with an RBI and run scored. “That score might not have been a one-run game if he hadn’t made them, too, so I’ll keep that in mind.”

Orioles/White Sox lineups and pregame tidbits

*Shortstop J.J. Hardy was back in the Orioles lineup Monday, after a CT scan revealed nothing wrong with his left ankle.  However, first baseman Chris Davis was still out with soreness in his right shoulder.  Both players missed Baltimore’s series against Toronto due to the injuries.

Davis said he expects to start on Tuesday and made it through pregame BP with no problems. He is available off the bench tonight if needed.

*The Orioles  put Cesar Izturis back on the disabled list, a  move that freed up a spot for reliever Jason Berken, who was recalled prior to Monday’s game.

Izturis left Sunday’s game early with a groin strain and will get an MRI on the area on Tuesday.

*Zach Britton (strained left shoulder) will pitch Sunday in a rehab start for Double-A Bowie and is in line to come back on Aug. 20 when his DL stint ends.

*Buck Britton, Zach’s older brother, was on the field for pregame batting practice on Monday, spending his off day with Double-A Bowie in Baltimore. Showalter said if Britton was going to come he may as well get a workout in, so that’s what Britton –a second baseman — did, joining the Orioles in the clubhouse and for the series hitters’ meeting as well.

*Jake Arrieta will travel to California Tuesday for Wednesday’s appointment with noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. Lewis Yocum. Arrieta is likely going to have the bone spur in his right elbow removed, a procedure that –if decided on — is tentatively set for Friday.

*Jo-Jo Reyes is the official starter for Tuesday.

ORIOLES LINEUP

J.J. Hardy SS
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Mark Reynolds 1B
Nolan Reimold LF
Matt Wieters C
Robert Andino 2B
Josh Bell 3B

Jeremy Guthrie  RHP

WHITE SOX LINEUP

Juan Pierre LF
Alexei Ramirez SS
Paul Konerko DH
Carlos Quentin RF
A.J. Pierzinski C
Alex Rios CF
Adam Dunn 1B
Gordon Beckham 2B
Brent Morel 3B

John Danks LHP

Orioles/Blue Jays rubber match: lineups and pregame notes

*Shortstop J.J. Hardy (left ankle)  and first baseman Chris Davis (right shoulder stiffness) got results from scans that revealed no long-term or structural damage.  Both said they hope to return to the lineup tomorrow against the White Sox after resting again today -they have now missed the past three games to avoid bothering injuries.

Davis said after having an MRI, he was told his shoulder is just undergoing normal wear and tear on his rotator cuff.  A CT scan on Hardy’s ankle did not show anything and he still dosen’t know what’s wrong with it, but will try to run tomorrow and hopes to play if all goes well.

*Jo-Jo Reyes took a bullpen session today and is expected to be the starter on Tuesday

*Jake Arrieta was placed on the 15-day disabled list last night with a bone spur in his right elbow and will be in California Wednesday when he could be told he needs to have season-ending surgery.

-Avi Zaleon

ORIOLES LINEUP

Robert Andino SS
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Mark Reynolds 1B
Nolan Reimold LF
Craig Tatum C
Josh Bell 3B
Cesar Izturis 2B

Alfredo Simon  RHP

BLUE JAYS LINEUP

Rajai Davis RF
Yunel Escobar SS
Jose Bautista RF
Adam Lind DH
Edwin Encarnacion 1B
Colby Rasmus CF
J.P. Arencibia C
John McDonald 2B
Brett Lawrie 3B

Ricky Romero LHP

Matusz outing caps off night of good news

Left-handed starter Brian Matusz got his first win for Class Triple-A Norfolk Saturday night in a 9-1 victory over Rochester with the following line: 7 IP, 1 ER, 5 hits, 2BB and 6 SO.  The outing lowers his Tides ERA to 4.14 and represents a recent uptick in Matusz’s production in Norfolk.  Before his start Saturday, Matusz lasted seven innings again on July 31, giving up three earned runs on six hits (two home runs), while striking out two and walking a batter.

Ironically, Saturday night was also Brian Matusz bobblehead night at Camden Yards.

With a banged up rotation now likely missing Jake Arrieta for the year if he undergoes surgery to fix a bone spur,  don’t be surprised to see Matusz pitching again in Baltimore before the season is through if he continues to put forth quality starts.  However, take the numbers with a grain of salt, as Buck gets reports regularly from the coaches down in Norfolk who have the say on whether they feel the young southpaw is ready to be called back up or not.

-Avi Zaleon

Orioles/Blue Jays lineups and pregame tidbits

*Shortstop J.J. Hardy (left ankle discomfort)  and first baseman Chris Davis (right shoulder stiffness) are out of the lineup for the second-straight night, x-rays done last night for both of them came back negative. Results from a CT scan for Hardy and MRI for Davis will be known at around 6 p.m. tonight.  Both said they feel fine and Davis said he would love to be put back into the starting lineup. To replace the infielders, manager Buck Showalter has put Robert Andino at shortstop and Blake Davis at second base, while Mark Reynolds is again at first.

*Zach Britton, who is on the 15-day DL with shoulder inflammation said his shoulder feels OK and can pitch. In his own words:

“It was never an issue of not being able to pitch. I’ve kind of been pitching through it and I could easily throw Tuesday. That’s just not what we’re looking at. We’re looking at trying to just calm whatever’s going on down and they feel like maybe I’ve been overdoing it a little bit trying to figure some stuff out in the bullpen. I’m kind of going through a rough stretch, so I’m really trying to figure some stuff out and maybe I overdid it a little bit, and it’s going to back me off, give me some time off and get going for the rest of the year.”

The Orioles have been very cautious about Britton’s innings count this season and the DL period gives him yet another chance to rest and collect himself after his season turned south following that impressive start to the year.

*With Britton out, Showalter and his staff need a starter for Tuesday’s game against the White Sox.  Right now, the most likely choice seems to be Jo-Jo Reyes, who can be stretched out to fit the starter role, which he was to start the season in Toronto.  However, Showalter did not dismiss the possibility of Triple-A pitcher Rick VandenHurk or another option from Baltimore’s bullpen.

-Avi Zaleon

ORIOLES LINEUP

Robert Andino SS
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Matt Wieters C
Mark Reynolds 1B
Nolan Reimold RF
Josh Bell 3B
Blake Davis 2B

Chris Tillman  RHP

BLUE JAYS LINEUP

Yunel Escobar SS
Eric Thames LF
Jose Bautista RF
Adam Lind 1B
Edwin Encarnacion DH
Colby Rasmus CF
Aaron Hill 2B
Jose Molina C
Brett Lawrie 3B

Brandon Morrow RHP

Davis scratched with shoulder discomfort

Chris Davis was scratched prior to tonight’s game with shoulder discomfort.  He said it is not a big deal and it was merely a precautionary measure.  Here’s what he had to say after tonight’s loss:

“It was just a few nights ago, I slept funny with my arm above my head, kind of just laying at a weird angle. I’ve done it before and it’s been a little stiff for the next couple of days, but nothing to where I couldn’t throw or swing or anything like that. So we’ll see what happens tomorrow.  It’s felt better actually the last few hours after a couple rounds of stim and ice and some anti-inflammatory, so in all honesty I don’t think it’s that big of a deal.  We were just playing it safe tonight and keep me out of the lineup, maybe take a few days off rest.  Hopefully they don’t see anything tomorrow and maybe I can play tomorrow night.

Last night, I didn’t feel like it was going to inhibit my performance or anything like that.  I felt like I was a little stiff, a little tight throughout the game, you know, just took a little more to get loose, but nothing to where I couldn’t play.  Obviously I played out the entire game.  I was a little but more stiff and sore today, just talking to the trainers a little bit, letting them know what was going on and we’re taking a look at it.  So to be honest, I don’t think it’s anything too serious and just taking every step to be cautious.”

And Buck Showalter on Davis:

“Right shoulder. He came in today and Richie’s been playing with his shoulder. He’s getting an MRI on it tomorrow, around 1:45. J.J.’s going to get, I think, a CT scan on his ankle. Chris tried to take batting practice and was still feeling some discomfort with it throwing. We’ll see where we are tomorrow. Hopefully, we can get it taken care of. We’ll know what we’re dealing with tomorrow. We’ll take a look at it after they get the pictures.”

-Avi Zaleon

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