03/07/2013 12:50 PM ET
Reimold confident in Opening Day outfield return
By Brittany Ghiroli / MLB.com
SARASOTA, Fla. -- Nolan Reimold did some light toss Thursday afternoon for the first time since leaving Friday's game with right shoulder soreness and was optimistic he would have enough time to get game-ready in the field before Spring Training ends.
"What do we still got, four weeks? I think I'll be all right," Reimold said before Thursday's game against the Blue Jays. "I'm not really concerned about not being able to play the field. I've made a lot of progress."
It's encouraging news for an Orioles team that, as it is presently constructed, would need Reimold, who is also coming off of season-ending neck surgery, to be more than a designated hitter to be on the Opening Day roster.
"We're approaching it that we want him to play left field to be active when the season starts," manager Buck Showalter said. "Nolan's a good outfielder, and we want to bring him back to bringing that skill to us.
"So you are saying if he says that I can DH, that it doesn't bother me at all, which is the case now, but, I can't throw or play defense, would we take him? Probably not."
Reimold started at DH Thursday and homered in his first at-bat, and Showalter has said that he hopes to get both Reimold and Nick Markakis (neck spasms) back on the field for Sunday afternoon's home game.
"I'll be able to play the field again," said Reimold, adding that his shoulder was feeling much better Thursday. "I just got to take care of my arm, work that issue out and get back out there. We still have four weeks left, and I'll get plenty of reps in by the time camp ends."
Orioles reassign five after Thursday's win
SARASOTA, Fla. -- The Orioles reassigned five players to Minor League camp following Thursday's 11-10 win over the Blue Jays, marking their first spring cuts.
Among those were two of the organization's top pitching prospects, behind Dylan Bundy and Kevin Gausman, in Eduardo Rodriguez and Mike Wright. Lefty Zach Braddock, who has been rehabbing back from labrum surgery, and catchers Luis Martinez and Allan de San Miguel were also reassigned to Twin Lakes.
Rodriguez, 19, was the youngest player in camp and pitched a scoreless ninth inning -- allowing just one hit -- against Team Spain. He also threw in the team's intrasquad game last month and went 5-7 with a 3.70 ERA in 22 starts for Class-A Delmarva.
"He wasn't here with a chance to make the club," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "When we looked at guys who could benefit from being here, he was one of them because of all the things we could expose him to. When I asked him, 'OK, why do you think you were here? What did you gain; what did you see?' And when he said, the best pitchers are the ones that work the hardest, I said, 'OK, you are getting it.'"
Wright was also in his first big league camp, and he appeared in three spring games, most recently two innings Thursday in which he allowed a run on three hits.
"Very similar stuff [to Rodriguez], except we just want to get him back on track," Showalter said of Wright, who went 10-5 with 4.06 ERA in 20 games last season. "He was a good-looking pitcher last year when he left here. Still have some high hopes for him. We had some periods where he got out of whack last year. Good to see him finish on a high note today."
Martinez did not get in any spring games, sustaining a left oblique strain in one of the early workouts, and he is close to returning to action.
"When they tell us he's ready to go and he's caught a little bit over there, we'll bring him back over for two or three good looks at him, four- or five-inning stints," Showalter said. "I really want to look at him. We've got some good reports on him, especially defensively, so you'll see him again."
De San Miguel also did not get into a game, and he left camp early to play for Team Australia in the World Baseball Classic. Braddock has finished the rehab portion of his program and is ready to start pitching batting practice, which is why he was reassigned.
Thursday's moves give the Orioles 56 players in Major League camp, including 16 non-roster invitees.
Machado to maintain high spring workload
SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles third baseman Manny Machado has seen plenty of spring action, playing in his eighth game Thursday afternoon and making nearly all of the team's road trips in his first big league Spring Training.
"It's OK, I like going on the road," said Machado, who made the jump from Double-A to the Majors last season and, despite being the team's projected starter, has seen plenty of time on the bus this spring. "My thing is just to play. I just want to go out there and play and get my at-bats and get ready for the season.
[Manager Buck Showalter] always tries to keep me level-headed, that's for sure. He always kept me there [last year]; he called me in his office and talked to me a couple times. He's always tried to keep me humble."
Machado was in camp unofficially last year, coming over from the Minor League side nearly every day, and while Showalter has done some strategic substitution -- leaving Machado in an inning longer than the other starters at home -- he said Thursday it was not all about the 20-year-old paying his dues.
"I want him to get in as many reps at third base as he can," Showalter said of Machado, who still has a shortstop's mentality on relays and bunts. "This is still somewhat new to him; any chance he can get to continue to develop his clock over there [at third] is good for him. It's got nothing to do with him being new or a rookie or whatever. Maybe a tad, but it's also got something to do with every chance we get him for him to play third base at Major League speed, I'm going to take advantage of it."
Machado -- who was scheduled to leave Thursday's game early to get a root canal -- will miss Friday's road contest, with Showalter wanting him to go to Fort Myers on Saturday instead to face Red Sox starter Felix Doubront.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.