Results tagged ‘ Garrett Atkins ’

Atkins in limbo

SAN FRANCISCO — The struggling Garrett Atkins wasn’t in Wednesday’s
starting lineup and has made just one start in eight days, as the
Orioles continue to be in a holding pattern with the first baseman.
Atkins has three hits in just 11 at-bats in the month of June, prompting
interim manager Juan Samuel to say that a decision needs to be made
soon.

“[President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail is] going to have to
come up with a plan [of] what can we do because he’s definitely not
getting enough playing time here right now,” Samuel said.

With the Orioles in the middle of Interleague Play on the West Coast,
the missing designated hitter has made it even more difficult for Samuel
to give Atkins an opportunity. A right-handed hitter, Atkins was signed
as a free agent in hopes that he could regain the power stroke that
once made him a feared National League hitter. Instead, he has struggled
to produce any pop, collecting just one homer and going 8-for-55 in his
past 20 games. Atkins is hitting .219 with a .292 slugging percentage.

“You just try to get him a lefty here and there, just hoping you are
going to see that swing. You know, you could see him produce,” Samuel
said. “But unfortunately I know the kid is trying, it’s just not showing
right now.”

Atkins signed a one-year, $4 million deal with Baltimore in the
offseason. The deal includes an $8.5 million club option with a $500,000
buyout.

Wieter's Bday bruise & Os/Nats lineups

wieters blog.jpg

*Scott Moore is in uniform (No. 40) and will ready to play off the bench. He said he’s been mostly playing second base at Norfolk but is comfortable playing around the infield.

*Matt Wieters is out of the lineup today with a bruised right knee. He fouled off a pitch in his third-inning at bat Thursday night and was sporting a pretty nice shiner. Said the game’s adrenaline kept him from feeling a lot of pain, and the team’s training staff was hoping to get some of the swelling down with treatment today. He was due for a day off soon anyhow. Oh, and it’s his 24th birthday, as Brian Matusz informed me. So Happy Birthday, Matt.

*Koji Uehara will not be available to pitch tonight. He saw, through interpreter Jiwon Bang, that he was told he will get the day off. Uehara also said the heat wasn’t a factor in Texas so much as his extended  30-pitch outing was. Trembley had mentioned giving Uehara a little breather, so I guess that’s what this is.

*As expected, red-hot Luke Scott is getting the start at first base in place of Garrett Atkins.

ORIOLES LINEUP:

Corey Patterson LF
Ty Wigginton 2B
Nick Markakis RF
Miguel Tejada 3B
Luke Scott 1B
Adam Jones CF
Craig Tatum C
Cesar Izturis SS
David Hernandez RHP

NATIONALS LINEUP:

Willie Harris RF
Christian Guzman 2B
Ryan Zimmerman 3B
Adam Dunn 1B
Josh Willingham LF
Pudge Rodriguez C
Roger Bernadina CF
Ian Desmond SS
Scott Olsen LHP

The Lone Star state

The Orioles are coming off a 6-2 4-4 homestand (see what I did there?) and will have a quick two-game set in Texas starting tonight with Jeremy Guthrie on the hill. He will be opposed by Rangers starter Rich Harden who is coming off a start aganst the Royals Saturday night. Harden went five innings giving up two earned runs on six hits while walking two and striking out three in the no-decision.

Tonight is the kind of game the Orioles can win if they can figure out Harden (the only regular who has faced him more than a handle of times is Miguel Tejada, who is hitting .250 in 12 career ABs).

Unfortunately, the two night games in Texas makes for tricky travel plans, and MLB opted for me to instead be ready for IL play in D.C. on Friday. But all your Orioles news will still be on Orioles.com and I’ve informed the highly-capable Todd Wills of the standards we have with here with the O’s. (Hey last-place teams, don’t deserve last place coverage- right?)

Some quick things to look for before I try to get my apartment in order: I would imagine Garrett Atkins would get the start in at least one, if not both, of these games. I grilled Trembley a bit on it yesterday and he made it clear that until there’s another feasible option, Atkins is the option. I still think Luke Scott’s hot bat sees time over there this weekend. They could also move Ty Wigginton over and put Julio Lugo at second base, which is what would have happenend when Lugo pinch-ran on Monday had the O’s tied the game.

Trembley mentioned a roster move coming for Friday’s game, which will probably spell the end for Alberto Castillo. Who comes up? A position player. Possibly Michael Aubrey, who is heating up. And he just so happens to play first base.

Finally, if you missed it, I wrote that the O’s won one for Kevin Millwood last night. He’s far too classy of a game to come out and say it, but seriously…are they ever going to get this guy a W?

  

 

  

Aubrey the answer?

Norfolk’s Michael Aubrey went 2-for-4 with a homer last night and is a strong candidate to be the extra position player the O’s recall for Interleague Play. He was slowed this spring with a non-baseball related issue and then a groin injury but appears to be heating up down in Triple-A. In his last 10 games, Aubrey is batting .433 with two homers and five RBIs, posting a .733 slugging percentage.

Is he the answer to replace slumping Garrett Atkins? I’m not sure Aubrey over Atkins can really be deemed an impact move. But at this point of the season, as Andy MacPhail said has said, the organization’s only option is internally. Aubrey does play first base and would allow the team some flexibility off the bench.

Atkins over Aubrey? I’m not sure what to think. What do you guys think?  

Orioles/Royals lineup and tidbits

*Brian Roberts will report to the team’s facility in Sarasota, Fla. on Wednesday and is expected to continue to progress in baseball-related activities until he can go on a rehab assignment.

*Mike Gonzalez threw to live hitters for the first time today, tossing live BP in Sarasota.
 
*Much has been made about Nolan Reimold playing first base yesterday, and Orioles manager Dave Trembley acknowledged that Reimold will play first pretty regularly while in Triple-A.  He admitted he’s not sure if Reimold -who is nine months removed from Achillies heel surgery – will ever have the same agility and mobility that he did before the injury.

*Koji to close? It’s a possibility Trembley wouldn’t rule out.

As always, more details to come on Orioles.com. But here are the lineups for today’s game as the forecast has some light rain, but the team is confident they’ll get the game in. (As I type this, they are taking the tarp off the field.)

Orioles starter Brad Bergesen faces Kansas City for the first time since he was struck by a Billy Butler liner to the shin last July. He will be opposed by Kyle Davies.

ORIOLES LINEUP:
Corey Patterson LF
Nick Markakis RF
Ty Wigginton 2B
Miguel Tejada 3B
Luke Scott DH
Matt Wieters C
Adam Jones CF
Garrett Atkins 1B
Cesar Izturis SS
Brad Bergesen RHP

ROYALS LINEUP:

Scott Podsednik LF
Mike Aviles 2B
David DeJesus RF
Billy Butler 1B
Jose Guillen DH
Alberto Callaspo 3B
Mitch Maier CF
Yuniesky Betancourt SS
Jason Kendall C
Kyle Davies RHP

Reimold's future plans?

With Rhyne Hughesdemotion back to Triple-A Norfolk, Orioles manager Dave Trembley confirmed that the Garrett Atkins will be the team’s first baseman for the next few days. But how much longer beyond that?

“I’ll sleep on it,” Trembley said following Atkins’ 0-for-4 showing in Sunday’s loss. “And we’ll see where we’re at.”

Things could get interesting given that Nolan Reimold started at first base for Norfolk on Sunday afternoon. Reimold has struggled offensively this season — prompting the demotion — but if he can get back on track he could get a shot at first base.

At one point last year that appeared to be the Orioles plan, but Reimold spent this spring solely in the outfield. He did take ground balls at first base in the final days of camp, but reporters were told to not read too much into it.

Given the spark Corey Patterson has given the O’s in left field, putting Reimold at first base isn’t such a crazy idea. Especially when you factor in the under-performing Atkins, who entered Sunday hitting .253 and is homer-less this year. Atkins struck out swinging, grounded into a double play and had two other ground outs against Indians starter Jake Westbrook to drop his average to .243. 

Reimold went hitless in his first two games with the Tides, but connected for a two-run homer for in his third at-bat on Sunday.

O's/Tribe finale and pregame tidbits galore

Lots of notes today in the Orioles series finale, starting with David Hernandez, who was scratched with a right shoulder injury and is being replaced with Mark Hendrickson.
*Hernandez said there are no plans for an MRI and classified himself as “day to day”. Manager Dave Trembley said the team is confident he will make his next scheduled turn on Friday, but acknowledged that how Hernandez comes out of his next side session will be a big factor in that decision.
*Brian Roberts took ground balls and hit off a tee prior to Sunday’s game and if all goes as expected, he will head to extended Spring Training on Tuesday.
*Mike Gonzalez came out of yesterday’s side session on the mound with no reported problems and is scheduled to throw one inning of live batting practice at the team’s facility in Sarasota, Fla. He will also throw an inning on Thursday with no scheduled plans beyond that.
*With last night’s decision to option Rhyne Hughes back to Triple-A Norfolk, Garrett Atkins will be the team’s everyday first baseman for the forseeable future.
*The move to recall Alberto Castillo in Hughes’ spot is one that replaces a lefty with a lefty. Given that Hendrickson is starting the O’s pen would be shorthanded, so Castillo gives the club some depth.
*Following his first blown save of the season in Saturday’s loss, Alfredo Simon will remain the team’s closer. But you would think his leash is far shorter now. “I can’t say I’m going to use him the next 10 times out [in a closing situation],” Trembley said.
*Finally, I asked Cesar Izturis if he ran on his own in the fifth inning of last night. He said he always has a green light but didn’t get a sign to steal. He was gunned out by Lou Marson in a play that later cost the O’s a run.
 
ORIOLES LINEUP:

Corey Patterson LF
Adam Jones CF
Nick Markakis RF
Miguel Tejada 3B
Ty Wigginton 2B
Luke Scott DH
Garrett Atkins 1B
Craig Tatum C
Julio Lugo SS
Mark Hendrickson LHP

INDIANS LINEUP
Asdrubal Cabrera SS
Grady Sizemore CF
Shin-Soo Choo RF
Austin Kearns LF
Russell Branyan 1B
Jhonny Peralta 3B
Mark Grudzielanek 2B
 Matt LaPorta DH
Marson C
Jake Westbrook RHP 

On the Atkins play

Garrett Atkins –who made an error in the eighth inning–   failed to run out a ground ball to first base in the sixth on a ball that he thought was going to roll foul. Instead, it veered back inside the line to make an easy play for Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, who seemingly threw out Atkins by a mile.

The television replays showed a sunglasses-wearing Trembley glaring, with his brow sort of furrowed. Later, Trembley revealed what he said to Atkins, who remained in the game.

“Atkins thought the ball was foul two different times, and it came in fair,” Trembley said. “He should be responsible for that. I told him, ‘Run, don’t umpire.’”

“I saw it bounce on one side of the line, then I stopped myself, [and] started to go,” Atkins said.  “Just one of those plays where you think it was foul a couple times and it ends up staying fair.”

Yankees/Os lineups and pregame tidbits

The Yankees are in town and Orioles right-hander Kevin Millwood will look for his first win tonight against the defending World Champions.

*In case you missed it, the Orioles made a roster move earlier today, purchasing the contract of Alfredo Simon.
*Brian Roberts saw Dr. Lee Riley yesterday and there is no news. He’s not ready to start doing any baseball stuff, and although he was at Camden Yards on Tuesday, did not make himself available to the media.
*Garrett Atkins was not in the Orioles lineup for the third consecutive game, and to his credit he is saying all the right things. He will get the start against lefty CC Sabathia tomorrow (since Rhyne Hughes is a left-handed hitter, Atkins is a better matchup), but this is an interesting situation to watch. Trembley said whether the team platoons or whether one guys gets the bulk of first base duties has to do with how they perform at the plate.
*Koji Uehara is scheduled to throw an inning for Double-A Bowie tonight as the first outing of his rehab assignment.
*It’s looking increasingly likely that Brad Bergesen will make Saturday’s start against the Red Sox. He’s the leadoff candidate for the spot and president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail confirmed nothing has changed. The club could decide to designate a reliever to make room for Bergesen. For more on Bergesen’s Triple-A start, I talked to him Sunday night and that story is up here

ORIOLES LINEUP
Adam Jones CF
Nick Markakis RF
Matt Wieters C
Miguel Tejada 3B
Luke Scott DH
Ty Wigginton 2B
Rhyne Hughes 1B
Nolan Reimold LF
Cesar Izturis SS
Kevin Millwood RHP

YANKEES LINEUP

Derek Jeter SS
Brett Gardner LF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Jorge Posad Ca
Curtis Granderson CF
Nick Swisher DH
Randy Winn RF
Phil Hughes RHP

Orioles around town this week

Here are some upcoming events this week as the Orioles get ready for six-game homestand against the Yankees and Red Sox….

RIGHT SIDE FOUNDATION “FUN FOR 21″ EVENT
On Tuesday, The Right Side Foundation, a nonprofit organization created by Nick Markakis and his wife, Christina, will host a group of twenty-one kids from the Casey Cares Foundation at the Maryland Science Center as part of their “Fun for 21″ program.  The kids from Casey Cares will have the opportunity to meet the Nick and Christina, tour the Science Center, view an IMAX movie and enjoy a complimentary lunch provided by ARAMARK.  This is the first of six “Fun for 21″ events scheduled for 2010.
 
GARRETT ATKINS ESPN ZONE VISIT
On Wednesday, Atkins will visit the ESPNZone in Baltimore from noon to 1 p.m.  During his visit he will greet fans and sign autographs, as well as participate in a Q&A session with fans hosted by Orioles broadcaster Jim Hunter.
 
NOLAN REIMOLD AUTOGRAPH SIGNING
On Saturday, Reimold will sign autographs and meet fans at the Slavie Federal Savings Bank’s Customer Appreciation Day from noon-1 p.m. The Oriole Bird will also make an appearance. The event will be held at Slavie’s Bel Air branch, located at 1614 East Churchville Road in Bel Air, MD.

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