News and notes Day 16 (updated)

The Orioles officially kicked off Grapefruit League play this afternoon in Port Charlotte, where they took on the Tampa Bay Rays and Erik Bedard.

*Chris Tillman threw two scoreless innings, striking out three and allowing one hit.

“It was good,” Tillman said. “I think it was more of going out and getting the adreneline flowing at the beginning and the nerve flowing more than anything else. I felt good about my self. Just wanted to work on fastball command today and for the most part it was good.”

“I think this early in spring it doesn’t really matter who you face. It’s just going out there and getting the feel again, we face our own hitters the first two weeks and it isn’t the same feel. So, it was good to get the juices flowing again.”

Zach Britton followed and allowed a run over his two innings, although it was a play that could have been made by Rule 5 Draft pick Michael Almanzar.

*Alfredo Aceves joined the team today, as expected, and practiced at the complex after being in Mexico to deal with a visa issue.

*Left-handed pitcher Chris Jones was officially released this morning, the team announced. Jones, acquired in the Luis Ayala trade last spring, was designated for assignment to create a roster spot for Nelson Cruz.

ORIOLES LINEUP
Jemile Weeks 2B
Fracisco Peguero CF
Steve Clevenger C
Steve Pearce 1B
Nolan Reimold DH
Henry Urrutia RF
Alex Gonzalez SS
Xavier Paul LF
Michael Almanzar 3B

Chris Tillman RHP

RAYS LINEUP
David DeJesus LF
Yunel Escobar SS
James Loney 1B
Evan Longoria 3B
Matt Joyce RF
Desmond Jennings CF
Jose Molina C
Logan Forsythe 2B

Erik Bedard LHP

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