O's seek spark with Pie's likely return
Baltimore (58-85) vs. Tampa Bay (73-71), 7:05 p.m. ET
BALTIMORE -- Even with expanded rosters, the Orioles find themselves short-handed. Baltimore has played with just three healthy outfielders for the past few days, but manager Dave Trembley expects Felix Pie to return from back spasms Tuesday. And even if he can't, Trembley said the Orioles aren't ready to make a roster move.
"We are not to that point yet," said Trembley. "For us to add another outfielder, he would have to be out for seven or eight days. We don't see that happening right now. ... We see it as a day-to-day situation."
The Orioles are in this situation for a few reasons, chief among them center fielder Adam Jones and his season-ending left ankle sprain. That pushed Pie into a full-time role and forced Nolan Reimold back into regular duty in left field. Baltimore called up Jeff Fiorentino when rosters expanded, and he's been playing center in Pie's absence.
Trembley still has a few options that he hasn't tapped, namely using Robert Andino or Ty Wigginton in the outfield. Andino, a natural shortstop, has played a few games in center field this season. Wigginton, who splits time at the infield corners, spent virtually all of the second half last season playing in left field.
Trembley also has designated hitter Luke Scott, who has spent most of his career as a corner outfielder. But as of right now, the Orioles are planning on forging ahead with the exact same cast of characters. Trembley said that he can get through the Tampa Bay series without Pie and without making a roster move.
"We still have Luke Scott that can play the outfield," Trembley said. "I've got Andino that I could put out there. I am confident today that [Pie] will be really improved and we feel pretty good that he could be back in the lineup [Tuesday]. Now if it got through this entire series and he wasn't available, then I would be more than glad to probably give you the answer to your question. ... But until we get to Thursday or Friday, I don't think we are considering doing that."
The Orioles have just 10 home games remaining, and they're sitting with a 34-38 record at Camden Yards. The Red Sox visits Baltimore after Tampa Bay leaves, and Toronto closes out the season on Baltimore's home turf. The Orioles are 12-14 at home against division rivals and just 6-23 on the road in those circumstances.Pitching matchup
BAL: RHP Jason Berken (4-11, 6.02 ERA)
Berken did not get the decision in his previous outing, going 5 1/3 innings, giving up four runs (three earned) on eight hits and four walks with three strikeouts. He gave up a leadoff walk to Jacoby Ellsbury and allowed two runs in the first before settling down. The outing was Berken's fourth consecutive start with three or fewer earned runs. TB: RHP Jeff Niemann (12-5, 3.57 ERA)
Niemann gave the Rays another quality start Wednesday night against the Yankees when he allowed one run on eight hits in seven innings of work, but he came away with a no-decision. The right-hander's fastball command -- which included a nasty two-seamer -- set up his breaking pitches nicely against the Yankees. Bird bites
The Orioles have lost 10 straight games on Mondays. Baltimore's last Monday victory came June 1 against Seattle. ... Melvin Mora played in his 793rd game at third base for Baltimore on Monday, moving into second place in franchise history behind Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson. ... The Orioles are 5-6 against Tampa Bay this season, boasting a 3-3 record in Camden Yards and a 2-3 mark in St. Petersburg. ... Baltimore has allowed first-inning runs in six straight and in eight of its past nine games. ... Pie was red-hot before he got hurt. The speedster was batting .324 (24-for-74) with 10 extra-base hits, 14 runs scored and 14 RBIs in his past 24 games. ... The Orioles are 38-31 when they score first and 20-54 when their opponent draws first blood. Tickets
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Wednesday: Orioles (Chris Tillman, 2-3, 4.91) vs. Rays (Andy Sonnanstine, 6-9, 7.15), 7:05 p.m. ET
Thursday: Orioles (Mark Hendrickson, 5-4, 4.43) vs. Rays (Wade Davis, 0-1, 8.38), 7:05 p.m. ET
Friday: Orioles (Jeremy Guthrie, 10-14, 5.06) vs. Red Sox (TBD), 7:05 p.m. ET
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.