Ups and downs
Jamie Moyer -- UP -- So, beating the Brewers and the Blue Jays isn't like taming the Indians. Big deal. He pitched great, and it still counts in the standings.
Sid Fernandez -- DOWN -- Talking retirement, but the short-term solution is to drop him out of the rotation.
Greg Zaun -- UP -- As Chris Hoiles' stock plummets, Zaun's value increases. Can't help you much with the bat, but he's a good catcher.
Armando Benitez -- WHO KNOWS -- He wouldn't wear the goofy clothes and he didn't handle the situation well, but remember, he's just 22.
Kevin Bass -- UP -- It's a gimme: He'll be back in '96.
Jeffrey Hammonds -- WHO KNOWS -- An enigma. Some days he
looks very good, other days he looks terrible.
Trade talks -- UP -- If the Orioles are 10 games behind by the All-Star break, forget it. If they're 6-7 games out and they can get David Cone . . . do it.
"We could've fallen out. We could've folded up. We could've said we're done. But we didn't do that."
6* Phil Regan, on the recent O's surge. Orioles catcher Chris Hoiles has two RBIs in his past 16 games.
The week ahead
Vs. Minnesota, Monday-Wednesday: Orioles lost their first two games in Minnesota in April, which almost seems incredible now, because the Twins have a total of eight wins at home this year. This is a must-win series; Orioles need to take either two of three or sweep all three. The Twins could be involved in a trade during this series, because beginning Friday, reliever Rick Aguilera can veto any deal, and Minnesota GM Terry Ryan may want to make a move before then.
At Chicago, Thursday-Sunday:. The Orioles' first meeting against the White Sox this year; all of the games between the two teams scheduled for early April were wiped out by the labor strife. If the White Sox continue to play as they have in the past week, the Orioles aren't catching them at a good time. Frank Thomas complained that no one was pitching to him, and bingo, he's started seeing more strikes and hitting more homers. Look for the O's to pitch around him constantly.
Mike Mussina has won his past two starts, and in beating the Brewers, 4-2, on Wednesday, the right-hander did not allow a homer -- the first time that's happened since he pitched Opening Day in Kansas City. The Brewers, who are now starting four rookies alongside Ricky Bones in their rotation. They don't have much in the way of run producers, they don't have much pitching, and they're a rotten defensive club. Plus, they're all banged up.
In Milwaukee's 11-3 loss to the Orioles Tuesday, Brewers catcher B.J. Surhoff hustled to back up an errant throw to first. The ball bounced off some cement next to the Brewers' dugout -- it would've stayed in play -- hit Surhoff in the face and went out of play. Surhoff was charged with an error.
A move that paid off. . .
Orioles manager Phil Regan didn't push his luck with John DeSilva when the latter made his first major-league start Tuesday. DeSilva pitched just well enough to keep the Orioles in the game, and then once he got into the sixth inning, Regan went to the bullpen. No point in destroying a good thing.
. . . and one that didn't
The Orioles could've left Sid Fernandez in the minors to continue his rehabilitation starts for another two weeks. But they activated him off the disabled list, and he got pounded again and the O's four-game winning streak came to an end.