KANSAS CITY, MO -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he took Kevin Gausman with him to Kansas City because he and pitching coach Dave Wallace wanted to have a long talk with the club’s prized pitching prospect before sending him back to Triple-A Norfolk.
Gausman was sent back to Triple-A this afternoon when reliever Evan Meek was recalled from Norfolk.
“We made that decision late and I wanted to have a long conversation with Kevin, Dave and I did, as opposed to doing it for five minutes before you get on a plane,” Showalter said. “We’d do that with any of our guys, not just Kevin. I don’t like having that, ‘Hey, don’t let the door hit you in the rear on the way out.’ I wanted to talk to him. I wanted to get some feedback from him about his outing. Usually it’s a lot better 24 hours afterward.”
Gausman allowed five runs in four innings in a loss to the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday at Camden Yards. Showalter said the talk was more about him listening while Gausman detailed how the outing went and what he learned.
“It was kind of one-sided. I wanted him to talk. Tell me what you thought about (Wednesday) looking back on it.’ You let things soak in and you want to understand the process. You pick up a little something every time and you take it back down there,” Showalter said.
“He was talking today about how many really good pitches that they ticked off, just fouled off. That’s one of the big differences. You say that’s strike 3 in Triple-A. Up here they tick it away and you have to make it again, you have to make it again, you have to make it again. … He processes it.”
Showalter said bringing up Meek was simple: The club needed another arm in the bullpen with Miguel Gonzalez and Gausman not available.
“He was the best fit all things considered. We had some people who hadn’t been down there 10 days, too,” Showalter said. “We had some guys …. that weren’t equipped to pitch innings. He’s had two or three days off and he’s ready to go.”
Wieters catches bullpen
Bud Norris threw his usual side session on Thursday, but he had a guest receiver: injured catcher Matt Wieters.
Wieters, on the disabled list with a strained right elbow, is not allow to throw for a while, but he didn’t want stay away from catching altogether.
“Just trying to keep the legs (in catching shape),” Wieters said. “Don’t want to have to get sore with my legs when I do come back, so just keeping the legs under me. Nothing with the arms still.”
He said the session went well, but he had to flip each pitch to bench coach John Russell, who threw them back to Norris.
“I had a couple times where I cocked back ready to go and then I realized I’m not supposed to throw yet,” Wieters said laughing.
** Schoop’s finger is fine
Jonathan Schoop had his right index finger wrapped on Thursday afternoon, but he said that was precautionary because it was still slightly swollen after a ball split his fingernail on Wednesday.
“The ball just hit my nail, split my nail,” said Schoop, who stayed in Wednesday’s game after the incident. “The blood started to come out because my finger swelled up a little bit. But it’s fine.”
The right-handed-hitting Schoop wasn’t in Thursday’s lineup, but Showalter said that was more because he wanted to get lefty Ryan Flaherty a start.
** Showalter said the Orioles were informed that Norris would not be suspended for hitting Torii Hunter with a pitch on Tuesday. He wouldn't say if Norris was fined by the commissioner’s office.
** Showalter said he is leaning toward having Gonzalez start a game in Pittsburgh, but that hasn't been decided yet.
** Player development director Brian Graham will be Russell’s bench coach on Saturday while Showalter is in Texas for his daughter’s graduation from law school. Graham will go with the club to Pittsburgh, where Graham lives, and then coach third base on Tuesday for Bobby Dickerson, who will be attending his daughter’s high school graduation. Graham will prepare for Tuesday’s game by coaching a day or two at Low-A Delmarva.