ARLINGTON, Texas -- Manager Davey Johnson did not go with his regular lineup against left-hander Darren Oliver last night and said he may shake up the batting order even more tonight in the second game of the three-game series against the Texas Rangers.
Jeff Reboulet started ahead of Roberto Alomar at second base, and catchers Chris Hoiles and Lenny Webster were both in the predominantly right-handed lineup last night. Tonight, Alomar probably will lead off and Brady Anderson likely will drop from the top of the order to the cleanup spot in an attempt to generate a more consistent attack.
The prospective lineup would have Jeffrey Hammonds hitting second and Rafael Palmeiro hitting third. Geronimo Berroa, who has not really asserted himself at the plate since he was acquired from the Oakland Athletics, would drop to seventh in the batting order.
"We've had trouble scoring runs for the last few weeks," Johnson said before last night's game. "I think I'm going to shake it up a little bit."
Maybe it was just another one of Johnson's trial balloons. Maybe he'll change his mind after last night's 5-1 win and go back to the standard lineup against Texas right-hander John Burkett tonight. But he wasn't just talking through his hat. He already had told Anderson not to be surprised if he shows up in a run-production spot soon.
"He told me to eat a lot and gain some weight because I'm hitting [fourth]," Anderson said. "He's the manager and I'm the player. I'll do whatever he tells me to do. Last year, he moved me out of the leadoff spot for a while and people thought I'd get upset, but I never was. Even he thought I was going to be."
Anderson batted second in 41 games last year, batting .310 with 15 home runs. He batted mostly third during his college career at University of California-Irvine and batted third and fifth in the minors.
Last night's lineup had Anderson in his regular place in the lineup, but Hammonds had moved into the second spot, Chris Hoiles was the designated hitter and B. J. Surhoff and Alomar got the night off.
"B. J., I'm just giving him an extra day off against a tough left-hander," Johnson explained before the game. "Alomar, he's still got some nagging little things so I'm giving him a day off against a tough left-hander. Berroa said his shoulder is all right, so I started him in right field."
Berroa has batted third in 16 of his 20 games as an Oriole, but he is hitting just .210 (16-for-76) since coming over from the A's. He has driven in 13 runs, and has a hit in his past 10 games, but Johnson apparently wants a left-handed hitter in the third spot against Burkett tonight, so Berroa will be dropped into the bottom third of the lineup.
"Berroa's record shows that he's very good against left-handed pitching," Johnson said. "I know he hasn't hit that well for us yet, but he has been a .300 hitter the past couple of years. I like him [third] against left-handers, and I might move him around against right-handers."
One last chance
General manager Pat Gillick said yesterday that Philadelphia Phillies GM Lee Thomas called him Sunday to give him one last chance to bid on Darren Daulton before trading him to Florida.
Gillick said that the Orioles did not make a last-gasp attempt to acquire him and apparently did not get any closer to acquiring pitcher Curt Schilling.
"I don't think he's going to move Schilling," Gillick said, "but that's up to him."
Incaviglia decision soon
The Orioles have three more days to do something with outfielder Pete Incaviglia, who was designated for assignment July 14. The club has 10 days from the date of the designation to trade, outright or release a player. Gillick indicated yesterday that the club probably would give Incaviglia his unconditional release.
July 31 approaches
Gillick said that he remains optimistic that he will be able to make a deal before the July 31 deadline to make trades without passing players through waivers, but he would not say whether he has focused his efforts on a pitcher or a hitter.
"Ask the manager," he said, with Johnson sitting 10 feet away.
Johnson, however, declined to state his preference.
"I don't know of any team that can't use at least one pitcher and one good hitter," Johnson said.
Around the horn
Cal Ripken, in the throes of a 5-for-42 (.119) slump, went 0-for-5, but was robbed of hits by Mark McLemore and Dean Palmer on diving stops in the infield. Ripken played in his 2,477th game, passing Max Carey to take over 41st place on the all-time list. He also had his 1,428th RBI to break a tie for 44th with Charlie Gehringer. The Orioles were 9-4 in their first 13 games in which the winning team scored three or fewer runs, but since June 15, they are 0-8 in those games. The Orioles are 11-13 in one-run games this year, but 15-5 in games decided by two runs. Bowie Baysox outfielder Dave Delucci will be present for an autograph signing at the Babe Ruth Museum today from 10 a.m. to noon. For details, call 410-727-1539.
Pub Date: 7/22/97
Davey Johnson is talking about shaking up the Orioles' batting order against right-handers, beginning tonight. Here's a look at the old and prospective new lineups:
Old .. .. .. .. .. .. .New
1. Anderson .. .. .. ..1. Alomar
2. Alomar .. .. .. .. .2. Hammonds
3. Berroa .. .. .. .. .3. Palmeiro
4. Palmeiro .. .. .. ..4. Anderson
5. Ripken .. .. .. .. .5. Ripken
6. Surhoff .. .. .. ...6. Surhoff
xTC 7. Hammonds .. .. .. ..7. Berroa
8. Hoiles .. .. .. .. .8. Hoiles
9. Bordick .. .. .. ...9. Bordick