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Erik Bedard brought his good stuff tonight. For three innings. Then Shannon Stewart singled and Nick Swisher homered.

But he still retired nine of 11 at that point.

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The Orioles are hoping to get six innings out of Jaret Wright tomorrow in Frederick. They're expecting Ramon Hernandez to catch around six innings.

Sounds like the perfect marriage.

Jay Gibbons continues to scuffle, and you wonder if he'll sit tomorrow against left-hander Dallas Braden.

"I just think he's trying a little too hard," manager Sam Perlozzo said. "Maybe if we get the one home run out of the way, we'd be better off, but I hate to say that. He's gotten a lot of base hits up the middle and the other way, and that's kind of what we'd like to see out of him. We know he's going to hit his home runs. Just work on getting his base hits and we'll worry about the long ball after that."

Another scene from the clubhouse: I counted 13 guys, many of them sitting on one sofa, watching one of Dan Haren's starts being shown on the clubhouse televisions after batting practice. A few players, including Kevin Millar (naturally) were commenting on what Haren threw in certain counts, in preparation for tonight's game.

More flattering remarks about the relievers: A scout from a National League East team, sitting behind home plate this weekend, noted how the Orioles would have lost at least two of the games against the Toronto Blue Jays in previous years, but this bullpen wouldn't allow it.

Billy Rowell, the Orioles' first-round selection in last year's draft, took live batting practice yesterday at the minor league camp in Sarasota, Fla. He's recovering from - you guessed it - a strained oblique muscle. He'll eventually be assigned to low Single-A Delmarva.

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