Davis shouldn't be pain in neck much longer


SARASOTA, Fla. -- Glenn Davis was a late scratch from the Orioles' two-day trip to Florida's east coast, but the first baseman should be back in the lineup by Thursday.

Davis, who has been "day-to-day" for a week with muscle spasms in his neck, took a precautionary Magnetic Resonance Imaging test yesterday and received a favorable report. He was scheduled to play today against the Yankees and tomorrow against the Mets, but manager Frank Robinson decided to leave him in Sarasota for two days of batting practice.

The test results on Davis came back normal and according to team trainers Richie Bancells and Jamie Reed, the first baseman has been "improving every day." Robinson had said Davis would play today's split-squad game against the Tigers in Sarasota "if he was able to play."

* EVANS A HOMEBODY: Dwight Evans is one player Robinson has gone out of his way to protect during the traveling exhibition season. Evans was scheduled to be the designated hitter in today's game against the Tigers.

It would be the veteran outfielder's third appearance of the spring -- all in Sarasota. "I want to keep him away from bus rides -- especially the long ones," said Robinson, mindful of Evan's back problems last season. Evans will not play in the outfield until after the Orioles move permanently to the Fort Lauderdale area for their last 10 games.

* NOT HOME ALONE: In addition to Davis and Evans, Cal and Bill Ripken, and Gregg Olson were among those left behind to play today in Sarasota and work out here tomorrow. "I've offered off days to some guys [to compensate for the hectic schedule], but nobody's taken me up on it yet," said Robinson. "They've all preferred to work out."

Olson was scheduled to make his third spring appearance today, along with Mike Flanagan, who had seven scoreless innings in his first two outings.

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