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Wilson optioned, leaves great impression on O’s

SARASOTA, Fla.—Tyler Wilson got everything he needed to out of first Major League camp, said O’s manager Buck Showalter, who optioned the right-hander after he held the Yankees scoreless in Saturday’s four-inning start.

Showalter joked that Wilson’s dominant outing —in which he held the Yankees to one hit— wasn’t enough for the O’s high standards, though the real reason Wilson was sent to Triple-A Norfolk is so he can be stretched out and get ready for the Minor League season.

“He got everything out of this spring that he could hope for,” Showalter said of Wilson, who allowed one earned run over 14 spring innings.

“He had a great spring.”

The former 10th-round pick pounded the strike zone, throwing 43 pitches (33 for strikes) and didn’t seem fazed in facing a Yankees lineup full of regulars.

“Warming up in the bullpen and they’re announcing the lineup and it’s one multi-year All-Star after another, it was pretty cool,” Wilson said, “but as soon as you pick the ball up on the mound in the game, it’s time to get to business and simplify everything and control what I can as opposed to worrying about who was in the box.”

In six spring games, Wilson issued one walk and struck out 11. He worked well with catcher Steve Clevenger on Saturday in using his command to his advantage.

“I felt great. We had, going into it, like I told you guys yesterday, I really just wanted to pitch my game, I wanted to get ahead early, pound the bottom of the zone and throw strikes, make quality pitches no matter who was in the box,” Wilson said. “Clev did a great job back there kind of walking me through it because I’d obviously never pitched against any of those guys before. He helped me with making good pitch selections, good target and getting ahead early.”

Wilson, who was named the Orioles Jim Palmer Minor League Pitcher of the Year last season, has steadily climbed the organization’s ranks despite not attaining “top prospect” status among national outlet until just recently. An 11th-round pick out of the University of Virginia, Wilson led O’s Minor Leaguers with 14 wins and 157 strikeouts in a  season split between Double-A and Triple-A.

“Every time I pitch, I’m fired up whether it’s Bowie, Norfolk, Delmarva, whatever,” Wilson said. “It’s fun to be able to go out there and pitch for a living. I was definitely more fired up [Saturday] than normal just given the circumstances. That’s a good environment to be able to harness everything, kind of reel it back in because there are going to be starts in the season that are the same way.”

Showalter made it clear Saturday that Wilson is on the team’s radar and the Orioles could use him as a reliever or starter down the road this season.

Pregame notes: Hardy to get MRA, Davies starting

*J.J. Hardy will get an MRA on his left shoulder on Monday. The Orioles aren’t expecting back a clean MRA because Hardy had labrum surgery on his left shoulder back in 2004. Orioles manager Buck Showalter said Hardy won’t play before Tuesday.

*Pitching prospect Zach Davies will get the start on Monday against the Tampa Bay Rays, with Wei-Yin Chen pitching in a Minor League game. The right-handed Davies is one of several prospects the Os want to get a look at this spring.

*J.P. Arencibia and David Lough are both expected to get back into games during Sunday’s split squad. Lough has been sidelined with a back issue while Arencibia had a flexor mass strain. The O’s are expected to make another round of cuts after the pair of games on Sunday afternoon.

Os at Yankees, Hardy update

Shortstop J.J. Hardy had been hoping to avoid anti-inflammatory medications this spring, but the infielder had no choice after jamming his left shoulder diving for a ball during Friday’s rain-shortened game.

“I think everyone kind of anticipated it being more sore today than yesterday so I don’t know [if there will be any tests],” Hardy said. “I don’t know what their plan is.”

Hardy planned on getting treatment and not doing much else on Saturday, and he wouldn’t have traveled to the road spring training game anyhow. He said his shoulder was “pretty sore” although, after looking at video, he didn’t think it had much to do with the collision with second baseman Jonathan Schoop.

“I don’t think my shoulder hit him at all,” Hardy said. “My arm hit him, I think my face hit him but I think the shoulder got jammed or something on the dive. So, don’t blame Schoopy.”

ORIOLES LINEUP

Alejandro De Aza LF
Manny Machado 3B
Jimmy Paredes DH
Chris Davis 1B
Travis Snider RF
Everth Cabrera CF
Steve Clevenger C
Ryan Flaherty SS
Jonathan Schoop 2B

Tyler Wilson RHP

Hardy, Schoop collide

Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy collided with second baseman Jonathan Schoop in the top of the second inning on Friday and manager Buck Showalter said they will monitor Hardy’s left shoulder over the next day or two.

“I was kind of falling, diving at the same time just to knock that ball down and keep it in the infield and then I think Schoopy was doing the same thing,” Hardy said of the play. “We kind of collided. It wasn’t bad. My glasses came down, my hat, all that stuff, but nothing was… It was no big deal.”

The play came on Jake Elmore’s RBI single up the middle and both O’s infielders dove to try to make a stab at it. Showalter said even if the game –which was called after 3 1/2 innings– had continued, he would not have sent Hardy back out.

“He wanted to hit again, but he wouldn’t have continued in that game,” Showalter said of Hardy. “We’ll see how he is tomorrow.”

Hardy said he thinks his shoulder is OK and he was not scheduled to make the trip to Tampa on Saturday anyway.

Pregame notes

*Tyler Wilson, the Orioles Minor League Pitcher of the Year last year, will get his first Grapefruit League start on Saturday against the Yankees.

“I’m excited,” he said. “Obviously, to get a chance to start a game is great. That’s all I’ve ever done in the Minor Leagues, so it’s good to be able to have a few days to get back in that routine a little bit.”

Wilson, who has emerged as one of the O’s top pitching prospects, has been used out of the bullpen this spring and the former 10th-round pick –out of the University of Virginia– said it’s been a learning experience.

“I haven’t done that before in professional baseball, so that’s been a huge learn just for down the line if that becomes the role that I play this year or for the rest of my career,” he said. “But to be able to add starting to the list and kind of getting into that routine if that’s how I start the season also is a huge perk.”

Wilson will face a Yankee team that should have most of its regulars in the lineup with the game being played in Tampa and said he will treat it just like any other game.

“Sometimes, it’s easy to get lost in those distractions and let your mind wander and think about what ifs, but as I’ve talked about, staying kind of locked in on day to day,” Wilson said. “I know it’s cliche, but focus on what you can do today to get better and whatever opportunity is presented to you in this given moment, to take full advantage of it.”

*The fastest Oriole in a 10-yard dash so far? Delmon Young. He has beat out speedy David Lough and Nolan Reimold.

*Kevin Gausman will start on Tuesday, assuming a rainout today doesn’t change the plans. He would go around five innings. O’s manager Buck Showalter had Gausman go just one inning in Thursday’s game and said they’d shorten him up as a potential bullpen option while the team tries to sort out who the starting five will be.

Orioles vs Rays

ORIOLES LINEUP

Nolan Reimold LF
Steve Pearce RF
Adam Jones CF
Delmon Young DH
Chris Davis 1B
J.J. Hardy SS
Manny Machado 3B
Caleb Joseph C
Jonathan Schoop 2B

Bud Norris RHP

RAYS LINEUP

David DeJesus RF
Rene Rivera DH
John Jaso LF
Ben Francisco 1B
Stephen Souza CF
Alexi Casilla 3B
Tim Beckham 2B
Jake Elmore SS
Bobby Wilson C

Everett Teaford LHP

Showalter says bullpen a possibility for Gausman

SARASOTA, Fla.— Kevin Gausman pitched just one inning in the Orioles’ 6-4 loss to the Tigers on Thursday and manager Buck Showalter said he could shorten up the right-hander as a potential bullpen option in the final two weeks of camp.

“Until everything shakes out, I want him to be ready to do both things,” Showalter said of Gausman, who allowed two earned runs, both of which came on Victor Martinez’s homer on Thursday.

Gradually stretched out as a starter this spring, Gausman in shorter stints could tip the O’s hand as to how they want to shake out the Opening Day rotation, which right now has six guys vying for five spots.

“There’s a possibility [to go to the bullpen] for everybody,” Showalter said. “Really all options open right now. We’ve got some time to make decisions, dealing from some quality right now. I don’t worry about it a lot because we’re picking from a number of people we like. As opposed to last man standing.”

Gausman, instructed to not throw any bullpens until he arrived at Spring Training this year, had steadily been increasing his workload. Prior to Thursday, his last outing had been four innings in a Minor League start against the Red Sox.

Gausman said he wasn’t sure what the plan was for him innings-wise heading into the game and the Orioles haven’t talked to him about being in the bullpen yet.

“Yeah, obviously I think I showed last year that I can pitch out there [in relief],” Gausman said. “I feel good out there, but I also feel comfortable starting, so that’s pretty much their decision.”

Showater said he would confer with pitching coach Dave Wallace as to when Gausman would throw next, but said the team “isn’t there yet” with having him throw back-to-back days.

Tillman, O’s same place on extension talks

Orioles starter Chris Tillman said after Thursday’s start there’s been nothing new in the past few months regarding an extension with Baltimore.

“I’m always open to it,” Tillman said. “I think I’m in the same position as I was when we were when we talked last time [in January]. I’m letting [my agent] do all the work. I hear about, read about it, but I told him not to come to me unless we’ve got something for sure. Same place we were last time we talked.”

Tillman would not be a free agent until after 2017 season and is making $4.315 million with the O’s this season. While there hasn’t been much progress between the two sides, a report earlier in the week that the two sides have begun extension negotiations had teammates asking Tillman.

“From what people are talking about, yeah. I get asked about it in the clubhouse all the time,” he said. “I try to stay away from that, and get ready for the season.”

As for extension talks during the season, Tillman said he’d rather not.

“I’ve been told we’re not going to continue that into the season,” he said. “We’ve got two weeks [left] for the most part.”

More pregame notes

*The Orioles have mapped out the tentative rehab schedule for catcher Matt Wieters, who will remain with the team through their season-opening series at Tampa Bay.

“He’s gonna be ready for extended spring,” Showalter said of Wieters, who will not have those games in Sarasota count against him on the rehab clock. Once Wieters gets some work in extended spring games he will head back up to Baltimore and start an official rehab assignment.

“He will work out of our locker room with [Double-A] Bowie and [Class-A] Fredrick,” Showalter said. “I’ve got an idea of what he’s targeted but I’m not going to throw that date out there…[it’s] encouraging. I think he feels good about where it is.”

Wieters will resume throwing on Saturday. He hasn’t been hitting during this recent shutdown and Showalter said he could serve at designated hitter as well once he works back to extended spring games.

*J.P. Arencibia was scratched from Thursday’s Minor League game with a right flexor mass injury. Showalter wasn’t sure how it occurred, he said Arencibia took regular batting practice and was fine when he left for the Major League game in Lakeland.

Arencibia has been catching regularly in Minor League games as the Orioles wanted him to get into the swing of things. He had a slow start defensively in the Grapefruit League and Showalter thinks he was trying too hard to impress his new organization.

“I sat down with him three or four days ago, I said, ‘is there something we can do different?’ Because I know he’s so much better than he’s shown,” Showalter said. “And he has, yesterday I was reading the [Minor League] reports about him coming over here. Pretty effervescent yesterday.”

He’s going to be a guy if he ends up Triple-A, if he does, you are going to like him around the players. It’s not like he’s 40 years old. This guy likes to play. For a guy that’s played four or five years in the big leagues, nothing is beneath him. He and [Ryan] Lavarnway both are very intrigued with what they heard about John Russell and the catching program. First thing they did when they walked in was, can we try that? Some of the footwork that caleb and the other guys are doing. He’s very receptive from Day 1.”

Orioles @ Tigers

*Jonathan Schoop had two teeth removed yesterday, one of which was a wisdom tooth, and said he will get two more removed in the offseason. The pair that they took out they had to be done now or he would have been sidelined at some point later this season.

*David Lough said his back is feeling better and he hopes to return to game action on Friday. Lough is just getting treatment right now and you can tell he’s antsy to get back out there.

ORIOLES LINEUP

Manny Machado 3B
Dariel Alvarez CF
Jimmy Paredes DH
Delmon Young RF
Nolan Reimold LF
Ryan Lavarnway C
Christian Walker 1B
Jayson Nix 2B
Paul Janish SS

Chris Tillman RHP

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