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Forget what I wrote earlier about the bullpen. I'm no longer worried.

(I need someone to sponsor my sarcasm)

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In a perfect world, the Orioles would have replaced injured closer Chris Ray with another closer, therefore keeping everyone else in their designated roles. But Cory Doyne hasn't resembled a major league closer and James Hoey probably isn't ready yet.

The lesson? It's not a perfect world.

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Ray won't be back for quite a while. Once he went on the disabled list, he needed three weeks to rest and rehab before starting a throwing program that could last two or three weeks. But at least he doesn't need surgery, according to his latest MRI.

Here's my suggestion, and it goes against what I was preaching earlier: Give Hoey a shot and return Jamie Walker and Chad Bradfor to their seventh- and eighth-inning set-up roles. And once Danys Baez is able to eat solid foods again without spending 12 days in the bathroom, let him back up Hoey, since his past experience as a closer was one of the reasons the Orioles signed him.

And the last time I checked, they've got him for two more years. Try to find some way that he can help out.

I like Rob Bell. He's been one of my favorites since spring training. Great guy. Great story, too, the way he overcame the anxiety attacks that derailed his career in Tampa. But he shouldn't be your seventh-inning guy. And Paul Shuey won't be doing it much longer if he doesn't rebound.

Feel free to disagree with everything I said. But this bullpen is completely out of whack. Too many guys are being used differently than what they're accustomed to, and they're not getting the job done.

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