Sunday, April 27, 2008

Orioles Team Report Apr 26, 2008

It might seem that the Orioles could not afford to have any of their starting pitchers go down, but now that Adam Loewen has been put on the 15-day disabled list because of soreness in his left forearm, it just might prove to be a positive in the long run.

Loewen has been largely ineffective in his four starts this season. He is 0-1 with a 7.85 ERA and he has issued a team-high 15 walks in 18 1/3 innings. Loewen’s disappointing start could have been caused by the pain he admitted has been ongoing since the start of the season.

Noting that the soreness is something that needs to be taken care of, the 24-year old Loewen, who was taken from the game on Thursday, said, “It’s starting to get worse in the general area of my forearm. It just starts off as a dull pain and gets sharper as I go on. Hopefully, it’s nothing serious and I don’t think it is.

“There are two guys in the bullpen that are deserving to get the ball every fifth day. They deserve a shot, so it’s not like a huge blow right now. We’ve got guys who can step in,” Loewen added in reference to Matt Albers and Jim Johnson, both currently in the bullpen after working as starters through most of their careers.

Manager Dave Trembley isn’t likely to take a long time to make the changes in the rotation and he has to feel fortunate to have some options with Albers, Johnson, and Garrett Olson and Radhames Liz, who have pitched very well at Class AAA Norfolk.

Trembley said he felt that something was wrong with Loewen, but the youngster, who was a first-round draft pick in 2002, never reported the soreness.

“I had him in Instructional League and I had him in the minor leagues, and I’ve watched him. To me, it just looked like there’s something that’s not right with him. Finally, when I took him out (on Thursday), he said he was sore. We’re going to get it checked out,” Trembley said.

ORIOLES AT WHITE SOX, postponed: Friday’s scheduled game was postponed due to rain. It will be made up Saturday as part of a day-night doubleheader.

Notes, Quotes

• LHP Brian Burres pitched only to leadoff batter Nick Swisher before the rain came in Chicago, forcing the second doubleheader of the year for the Orioles. They lost both ends of a twin bill to Texas after the last rainout.

• LF Jay Payton, who had a home run, stolen base and two runs scored on Thursday in Seattle, was back in the starting lineup on Friday in Chicago. He has raised his average to .306.

• INF Eider Torres was recalled on Friday from Class AAA Norfolk to extend the bench and cut the number of pitchers back to 12. Torres was hitting .338 at Norfolk, which means his presence will put some pressure on the light-hitting Brandon Fahey and Luis Hernandez.

• LHP Adam Loewen was put on the 15-day DL on Friday. He admitted, after being taken from the game on Thursday, that he has had soreness in his left forearm and has compensated by changing his delivery. The youngster was injured after only six starts in 2007.

• LHP George Sherrill got his eighth save of the season on Thursday in Seattle and five of them came in the seven games the Orioles have played against the Mariners, the team Sherrill played for the previous four seasons.

By The Numbers: 3—Pinch-hit singles in three consecutive games put Jay Payton in the spotlight in Baltimore. Payton ran his hitting streak to four games when he broke up Andy Pettitte’s no-hitter with a fifth-inning, broken bat, infield single on Sunday

Quote To Note: “I’m kind of surprised that we’ve surprised some people, to be honest with you. The wins make it easier to sell that, not to the players, but to the people that are watching, the people that love and care about the Orioles.”—Manager Dave Trembley reflecting on the Orioles’ early-season success.


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