Left-hander Brian Matusz's struggles continued Tuesday night in his first start for Triple-A Norfolk since his demotion from the Orioles on Thursday, Matusz allowed four earned runs on seven hits, including two homers, and two walks while striking out three over 52/3 innings in the Tides' game at Charlotte.

Matusz surrendered four extra-base hits, including homers by Jim Gallagher and Lastings Milledge, before he was relieved by Mark Hendrickson. He threw 51 of his 87 pitches for strikes.

The 24-year-old was 1-4 with an 8.77 ERA in six starts for the Orioles before being optioned to Triple-A. In 252/3 innings, he allowed 25 runs on 40 hits, including nine home runs, and 11 walks. Hitters batted .357 against him.

Ripken reaches final

Ten years ago Sunday, Cal Ripken Jr. took the field in Seattle for the 19th and final All-Star Game of his Hall of Fame career. He headed toward third base, where he had been voted to start, but shortstop Alex Rodriguez pushed Ripken to short, allowing the Orioles great to return to the position at which he made his mark.

"At the time, it wasn't so meaningful because I was mad. I don't like to be surprised," Ripken said Tuesday on a conference call that announced Ripken's 2001 All-Star Game performance as the most memorable for the American League. "I was wired, I was on a mike, and I really wanted to tell [Rodriguez], 'No, get out of here,' in a different way than I just described it to you."

Once the surprise subsided, he said, Ripken felt differently.

"It was the coolest gesture that anyone can give you," he said. "When it was all said and done and I hadn't embarrassed myself out there, it was the coolest gesture ever."

Ripken further added to his legacy that day, being named the game's Most Valuable Player after hitting the first pitch he saw from Chan Ho Park in the third inning over the left-field fence. That performance has pushed Ripken into the finale against Stan Musial's 1955 walk-off home run as the greatest moment in All-Star Game history as selected by fans, who can vote through Saturday at mlb.com/moments. The winner will be revealed at this season's All-Star Game, Tuesday in Phoenix.

Around the horn

Showalter said he has not decided whether Chris Jakubauskas will make his next start, which is scheduled for Saturday in Boston. Sunday's Orioles starter is also to be announced. … Showalter said the Orioles could make another roster move soon, depending on whether the team could use another reliever or additional offensive help. … Third baseman Mark Reynolds is the first Oriole to hit 20 homers before the All-Star break since Charles Johnson in 2000. He is the first since Frank Robinson in 1966 to achieve that mark in his first season as an Oriole, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. … High-A Frederick right-hander Oliver Drake (Navy) and outfielder Steven Bumbry have been named the organization's minor league pitcher and player of the month. Drake also received Carolina Player of the Week honors for throwing 171/3 scoreless innings. Bumbry, the son of former Orioles outfielder Al Bumbry, batted .296 with two homers and eight RBIs in June. … Orioles center fielder Adam Jones is fourth out of five American League contestants in baseball's Final Vote competition, which awards the final roster spot on each All-Star team.

dan.connolly@baltsun.com

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Baltimore Sun reporters Jeff Zrebiec and Steve Gould contributed to this article.

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