02/03/10 5:41 PM ET
Sarfate clears waivers, sent to Norfolk
Reliever will compete for bullpen slot at Spring Training
By Spencer Fordin / MLB.com
Sarfate, who was originally acquired when the Orioles traded Tejada to Houston, spent much of last season on the disabled list with a circulatory condition in his right hand. The 28-year-old pitched to a 0-1 record and a 5.09 ERA last season, but pronounced himself healthy and back to his peak velocity after a successful stint in the Mexican Winter League.
Baltimore's bullpen appears to be fairly well determined in the weeks leading up to Spring Training. Michael Gonzalez is set to be the closer, and Jim Johnson will reprise his duties as setup man. Baltimore also has Koji Uehara to use in a relief role, and Mark Hendrickson's signing will likely be announced soon. That leaves three spots, and several arms to compete for them.
Cla Meredith would seem to be a favorite for one of the remaining vacancies, and Sarfate will also have to compete with Matt Albers, who came over from Houston with him two years ago. Baltimore may also consider Kam Mickolio for a bullpen slot, and former starters David Hernandez and Jason Berken may well convert to relief work at some point in Spring Training.
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.