Orioles @ Nationals lineups and pregame notes

Happy Birthday to Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez, who turned 29 today.  Here are the rest of your pregame notes from Nationals Park…

*Tommy Hunter’s right hand is a little swollen but looked good all things considered and he got a second X-ray this afternoon (the first done last night was negative) just to make sure. The early reports have been positive on Hunter and the Orioles are pretty optimistic he’ll avoid any serious injury. Hunter said he hoped to be available tomorrow.

*Speaking of availability, manager Buck Showalter stood by closer Jim Johnson again this morning and the right-hander –who has blown four of his last five save opportunities– will get every opportunity to work through his struggles and get back on track. Johnson will remain the team’s closer, although coming off a 37-pitch outing yesterday he’s not going to pitch for a third consecutive day today.

*Pedro Strop (lower back) is still with the team and Showalter said he hoped to get Strop throwing on the team’s upcoming homestand, which begins on Wednesday.

*All Orioles uniformed personell are wearing special jerseys today and they will be autographed and authenticated and auctioned on Orioles.com beginning at 1 p.m. ET. and continuing through June 2. The proceeds will go to the Yellow Ribbon Fund to  benefit patients at the Walter Reed national Military Medical Center. The Orioles will visit the facility tomorrow.
Nick Markakis RF
Manny Machado 3B
J.J. Hardy SS
Adam Jones CF
Chris Davis 1B
Matt Wieters C
Steve Pearce LF
Yamaico Navarro 2B
Jason Hammel RHP

Denard Span CF
Steve Lombardozzi 2B
Jordan Zimmerman 3B
Adam LaRoche 1B
Ian Desmond SS
Tyler Moore LF
Roger Bernadina RF
Kurt Suzuki C
Gio Gonzalez LHP


Why play the game?? If Buck keeps on bringing in a “supposed” relief pitcher who by just watching him you could tell he did NOT want to be there—nor should he have been! I realize he had a fantastic year last year but NOT so this year. O’s used up ,apparrently,all their $ resgning him and letting Reynolds walk. How has that worked out todate? We would be safely in 1st place without Johnson & with Reynolds!!

I am 82 ,been an O’s fan faithfully ,bad&good years ,winning/losing streaks but now I cannot no longer waste my time watching a team (ie Mgr) begging to be beaten by sticking with a loser! A sure sign of silliness(?) is doing the same thing over& over and expecting different results. Look to Philly and reliever Lidge— he was great and then totally lost it. Rest my case AND I have been a strong supporter of Buck (though not DD) until this Johnson fiasco.

I listened to your analysis of the closer on 105.7 this morning, and I’ve not heard a clearer or more cogent assessment. Many thanks!

Thank you, Bernard. I appreciate it!

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