TORONTO -- After sending right-hander Darren O’Day to a hand specialist for lingering numbness and tingling in his fingers, the Orioles believe a pair of injections could salvage the late-inning reliever’s season.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said O’Day received injections in two parts of his right wrist and hand area in Florida after seeing specialist Brian Schofield, which the club hopes can reduce the inflammation in nerves near the problem area.
“We feel good about getting our arms around what’s going on there,” Showalter said before Friday’s game. “I don’t think we’re completely out of the woods, but the doctor said it should quiet down the inflammation that’s kind of pressing and causing the discomfort. … Hopefully it will manage itself in a day or two. I think in the next 48 hours we’ll know if it solves itself.
“It’s basically a compression of those nerves there,” Showalter added. “The inflammation compresses them.
If the inflammation subsides, Showalter said O’Day could rejoin the Orioles in Tampa on Friday. Showalter said O’Day needs to just throw one session without the numbness and tingling in order to return.
The club still isn’t exactly sure what’s causing the ailment, but Showalter said there is no structural damage.
O’Day, who leads the Orioles with a team-best 2.28 ERA, made just two appearances over the past two weeks before Showalter announced Thursday that he wouldn’t join the club on the trip to Toronto.
Other pregame notes
** The club has selected the contract of Dan Johnson from Triple-A Norfolk. Johnson will be a replacement left-handed bat in place of Henry Urrutia, who is not with the team in Canada because of visa issues. The team placed Urrutia on the restricted list, so they would have to create space for Johnson if Urrutia returns to the active roster.
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** Baltimore native Steve Clevenger will make his first start with the Orioles tonight. Showalter wanted to give starter Matt Wieters, who had caught six of the past seven games, a day off since he will be catching both day games Saturday and Sunday.
** Danny Valencia, who has thrived against left-handed pitching, is in the starting lineup against right-hander Todd Redmond tonight.
** Light-hitting Toronto infielder Munenori Kawasaki is starting at second and hitting second tonight. He has driven in eight runs in 11 games against the Orioles this season 16 against the rest of baseball.
Here are tonight’s lineups:
Nate McLouth LF
Manny Machado 3B
Chris Davis 1B
Adam Jones CF
Nick Markakis RF
J.J. Hardy SS
Ryan Flaherty 2B
Danny Valencia DH
Steve Clevenger C
Jason Hammel RHP
Jose Reyes SS
Munenori Kawasaki 2B
Edwin Encarnacion DH
Adam Lind 1B
Brett Lawrie 3B
Colby Rasmus CF
Moises Sierra RF
J.P. Arencibia C
Anthony Gose LF
Todd Redmond RHP