NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter just met with the media for his annual winter meetings news conference. Here are some highlights:
** On the health front, Showalter said he believes outfielder Nolan Reimold (neck surgery), Brian Matusz (hernia surgery) and Tsuyoshi Wada (Tommy John surgery) are all recuperating well. Showalter said he believes Wada, who had surgery May 11, could be available before most originally expected, though he wouldn’t predict a date. It usually takes a year or more to recover from the surgery.
Showalter also said Orioles rookie third baseman Manny Machado had what the manager called a meningitis scare earlier this winter, which very much scared the team for a few days. But Showalter said he seems to be fine now and has had no after effects.
** Showalter talked to free agent left fielder Nate McLouth by phone today and he said he expects the Orioles to meet with McLouth’s representatives today in Nashville. He said the club and McLouth maintain interest in a reunion.
** Showalter said he would also like Mark Reynolds back in a mutually agreeable deal, but overall he likes his current team and will be fine if no major transactions are made.
** Showalter has talked to Chris Davis and told him he would get an opportunity to compete for the first base job.
** Showalter expects reliever Pedro Strop to pitch for the Dominican Republic in the upcoming World Baseball Classic. Reliever Jim Johnson was asked to compete for the U.S. team, but Showalter said Johnson likely will refrain. Johnson was bothered by back issues last spring. Wei-Yin Chen is not expected to pitch for Taiwan.
** Showalter expects to meet with Dan Duquette in Baltimore perhaps Friday before making a final decision on his open third base coach. He said his list has been winnowed to a couple candidates.
** He said he has talked to Omar Quintanilla, who was not tendered a contract, and he could return to the club on a minor league deal. Quintanilla also could play in the WBC for Mexico.
For a full transcript of the news conference: CLICK HERECopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun