Left-hander Dana Eveland arrived in Baltimore on Thursday morning running on four hours sleep after receiving word that the Orioles were purchasing his contract from Triple-A Norfolk around 1:30 a.m.
The Orioles purchased Eveland's contract to satisfy their need for bullpen depth for this afternoon's series finale against the Rays after relievers accounted for 6 1/3 innings in Wednesday's 10-1 loss.
The club optioned utility man Steve Tolleson to Norfolk to make room for Eveland on the 25-man roster. The Orioles had an open spot on their 40-man roster, created when they designated outfielder Steve Pearce for assignment Saturday.
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The addition of Eveland means the Orioles will play Thursday's game with a three-man bench. But Orioles manager Buck Showalter said that might only be an issue for the next two games, meaning Eveland could shortly be designated for a third time this season.
“It doesn’t have to be days, plural," Showalter said. "Today our need is to have some length out of the bullpen. … In a perfect world, you’d like to have four there [on the bench]. But we’ll get back there again, hopefully after a good start today or tomorrow.”
Eveland began making the 2 1/2-hour drive from Allentown, Pa., where Norfolk was playing Lehigh Valley, at 6:30 a.m. Thursday, getting a ride from minor league instruction coordinator Brian Graham.
"I feel good," Eveland said. "Glad to be back. I was a little surprised by it, especially after they took me off the roster. They didn't have much of a choice when sending me down. I'm assuming I'll be ready to go in the bullpen today."
Eveland allowed six runs on six hits over 3 1/3 innings in his first start at Norfolk since being assigned there last week, but said he threw the best bullpen session of his life two days ago.
"Hopefully, I can translate that into the game," Eveland said.
Eveland said he's learned to adjust to being designated twice this season -- and possibly a third time -- and shuttling back and forth between the Orioles and Triple-A. He could have become a free agent both times, but he would forfeit the remainder of his $750,000 contract with the O's.
"I'd rather go through that than be stuck [in Triple-A] the whole year," Eveland said. "If I have to do that to be a part of this team or to spend as much time here as I can, so be it."
Other news of note:
-- Right-hander Miguel Gonzalez, who allowed seven runs in 2 2/3 innings on Wednesday, said today he's been sick the past three days, but didn't want to use illness as an excuse for his poor performance. He threw up earlier in the day Wednesday. Gonzalez said after his start that he had trouble with his grip throughout the night. In retrospect, he said he wished he threw more two-seamers than forcing his split-fingered fastball and changeup. Gonzalez, known for his control, walked two and hit three batters.
-- Second baseman Robert Andino has been in Baltimore the last three days and was working on drills to strengthen his injured left shoulder before Thursday's game. Showalter said he hopes Andino will head to Sarasota to begin rehab there when the Orioles head to New York for a three-game series following Sunday's game.
Here are this afternoon's lineups:
Nick Markakis RF
J.J. Hardy SS
Jim Thome DH
Adam Jones CF
Matt Wieters C
Chris Davis LF
Wilson Betemit 3B
Mark Reynolds 1B
Omar Quintanilla 2B
Chris Tillman RHP
Desmond Jennings LF
B.J. Upton CF
Ben Zobrist 2B
Matt Joyce DH
Ryan Roberts 3B
Carlos Pena 1B
Sam Fuld RF
Jose Molina C
Elliot Johnson SS
James Shields RHP