Showalter pre-game, lineup, Rapada and Jakubauskas quotes
By Dan Connolly
Apr 18, 2011 | 1:46 PM
The moves we expected are official.
Lefty Clay Rapada's contract has been purchased from Triple-A Norfolk and Chris Jakubauskas, who has been dealing with tightness in his right groin, has been placed on the 15-day disabled list.
Rapada wasn't on the 40-man roster, so to make room for him, the club moved Justin Duchscherer from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list. It's really just a procedural move; it would have been tough to expect him to be ready any sooner than May 30. Duchscherer (hip, back) threw just two innings in a big-league spring training game.
The 30-year-old Rapada is 3-0 with a 4.22 ERA in 46 major-league games that span parts of four major-league seasons. Last year, Rapada pitched in 13 games with the Texas Rangers, compiling no record and a 4.00 ERA in nine innings. He signed as a non-roster free agent, and within a month has made the club as a lefty specialist.
"I am happy to be here. If they want me to pick up the (trash) cans, I'll be like, 'Hey, no problem,'" he joked.
Rapada said he saw an opportunity with the Orioles and had a relationship with current Orioles' pitching coach Mark Connor, who was a special assistant in player development with the Rangers.
"When I was going through the offers (this offseason) opportunity to make the big-league team was my number one priority. And when it came down to it, I definitely felt this was my best chance," Rapada said. "Having a relationship with Mark Connor, he was like, 'You have the opportunity to win a job here."
Jakubauskas said he was frustrated that his time with the Orioles lasted just a week, but he said the injury isn't serious and expects to be ready when eligible to come off the DL.
"It's more frustrating than anything. This is not how I want to start the year, but things happen. I am just glad it is not as bad as I thought it was," Jakubauskas said. "It was pretty sore in New York, but it has gotten progressively better every day. But it is not to the point where I can go out and let it go 100 percent. I have two weeks to get it healthy and let it get stronger."
Orioles manager Buck Showalter gave some updates on other injured players. He said Brian Matusz (intercostals muscle strain) threw between 60 and 90 feet today without pain in Sarasota and they'll have a better idea how he is progressing on Tuesday.
There is still a possibility he'll fly up during this homestand to meet with coaches and trainers, but Showalter said the club will proceed cautiously with Matusz. He said it won't be a situation where he makes one rehab start and is back, so there is no set timetable for his return, Showalter said.
"I would caution everybody that even when he gets to a point where he can throw off a mound there are a lot of steps he is going to have to cross over before he can be a pitcher here again," Showalter said.
J.J. Hardy (oblique strain) showed marked improvement today, but has not started baseball activities.
Showalter tweaked the lineup a bit, with Mark Reynolds batting fifth and Luke Scott sitting against lefty Francisco Liriano. Showalter said the move was to give right-hander Jake Fox another start in left while resting Scott another day. Scott had been hobbled previously with groin tightness. He was available to pinch-hit today.
Here is the lineup: Roberts 2b, Markakis rf, Lee 1b, Guerrero dh, Reynolds 3B, Jones cf, Fox lf, Wieters c, Andino ss. Tillman is pitching