Franco's slider would leave Regan with pleasant choice


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Manager Phil Regan wouldn't speculate on how he might split bullpen duties between John Franco and Armando Benitez if the Orioles do sign Franco, a free agent. But he did offer this assessment of the left-hander: "I've seen him a lot. We had him with the Dodgers, but we didn't teach him a slider and then we traded him. He came up with a slider and he became a great pitcher.

"He takes the ball; he's got a really good circle changeup, a good slider and a good sinker. He's got a pretty good track record, and he's saved a lot of games."

Tough day

It was a bad day for Orioles minor-leaguer Tyrone Woods. In the morning, he was hit on the temple by a liner when teammate Scott McClain blindsided him in a pepper game. Shortly thereafter, an errant throw nailed Woods in the shoulder. And during the afternoon intrasquad game, pitcher John DeSilva drilled Woods in the back of the neck with a fastball.

Afterward, Woods was more shaken than hurt.

"I'm not going to play the lottery today," Woods said.


Marv Foley's O's defeated Chuck Cottier's Birds, 3-2, and took a 3-2 lead in the grudge match. . . . DeSilva and left-hander Shane Hale were impressive. . . . Infielder Junior Noboa, one of three Orioles minor-leaguers whose arrival in camp was delayed by visa problems, will join the Triple-A and Double-A players here tomorrow. . . . Speedy outfielder Kimera Bartee, who played in Australia during the winter, arrived in St. Petersburg yesterday and made his presence felt immediately, drawing a walk, stealing a base and hitting a double in his first two plate appearances. . . . The latest Oriole siting -- catcher Chris Hoiles, working out early in the evening Monday night in St. Petersburg.

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