Ripple effect figures to aid O's affiliates


The major-league strike and resultant late start of spring training for players on the 40-man roster created a state of flux for teams in the Orioles' minor-league system.

But this week, the organization's personnel will settle in with their clubs and stability will return.

With the Orioles making their final cuts Sunday, Triple-A Rochester will be the first to benefit.

The Red Wings' 25-man roster -- which figures as a strong one -- will be determined today, when a probable total of four players are optioned to Double-A Bowie.

Then, Bowie and Single-A Frederick, which will receive four players from the Baysox, will fall in line, seeking help to overcome slow starts, particularly on offense.

Orioles director of player development Syd Thrift said there are special problems associated with this spring-training period that included "not knowing when the players were going to be sent down."

Thrift said, "We had a situation where we had the worst spring training schedule, being on the road all the time, no replacement players and a new manager and a new staff who had to have time with these players [15 caught between the 25-man and 40-man rosters]." Among the players expected to join the Baysox in the next day or two are first baseman Jayson Friedman and reliever Jeff Faino, both obtained Tuesday from the Boston Red Sox. Infielder Matt Howard, acquired from the San Diego Padres, also is expected in the next couple of days.

Two others who played for the Baysox last season -- infielder T.R. Lewis and pitcher Rick Forney -- are also expected to rejoin the team.

Baysox slide

The Baysox's problems during a team-record, nine-game losing streak were reflected by a .166 team batting average and 12 runs scored.

The team scored more than one run only twice during the slide and through Sunday was last in the Eastern League with a .203 team average and six home runs.

Woods hot

Red Wing Tyrone Woods, a free-agent signee from the Montreal Expos system, was tearing up the International League through the first 2 1/2 weeks, and was named the league's Player of the Week this past week.

During a nine-game hitting streak, he was 17-for-32, ranked third in the league with a .415 average and led in doubles, slugging percentage and extra-base hits.

Woods started the year in the outfield, was moved to first base when Alex Ochoa reported and now, with the addition of Paul Carey, is likely to be the Wings' designated hitter.

Around the horn

Wings infielder Edgar Alfonso is suffering from blurred vision and may be headed for the disabled list and laser surgery. . . TC Curtis Goodwin's first question to a cab driver after he landed in Rochester at 6 p.m. Saturday: "What time's the game start and can I get there?" He was informed the Wings already had won an afternoon game. Making his debut Sunday, Goodwin went 2-for-5 and manufactured his own run with a double in his first at-bat, a steal of third and a score when the catcher overthrew third. . . . Rochester's disabled list already includes outfielder Jim Wawruck (shoulder) and pitcher Steve Chitren (sore elbow). . . . Scott McClain and Brad Tyler each had four homers to tie for the IL lead.

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