The Orioles placed pitcher Shawn Boskie on the 15-day disabled list before last night's game. Cause: elbow triceps tendinitis and a cramping roster.
The decision was made during a pre-game meeting among manager Davey Johnson, general manager Pat Gillick, assistant GM Kevin Malone, trainer Richie Bancells and team physician Michael Jacobs. The reasons were both medical and practical.
Boskie, scheduled to start in Tuesday's doubleheader in Kansas City, left after the seventh inning of Friday night's 8-3 loss to Seattle complaining of stiffness in his right elbow. A post-game examination revealed inflammation in the area but "nothing serious," according to Boskie.
However, Boskie agreed to take a cortisone injection yesterday afternoon and was told by Jacobs he could not throw again before Tuesday. Rather than risk Boskie attempting a start on a reduced pitch limit with no preparation, the club opted to put him on the disabled list and promote Esteban Yan from Triple-A Rochester.
"I'm not that optimistic about it. And I wouldn't take a chance with his career," Johnson said. "And I don't see how in the world when he can only give me 40 pitches [Friday] how I should expect him to give me five innings four days later with a bad elbow."
Yan, 23, will take Boskie's turn, then likely remain with the team until rosters expand Sept. 1. Boskie is eligible to return Aug. 31.
"It's better to have someone with 150 bullets in his arm," Boskie conceded.
"I'm not surprised, considering what we're trying to accomplish as a team," said Boskie, who learned of the decision when Johnson approached him in the outfield during batting practice. "Disappointed, yeah. I've never had a [cortisone] shot before. It's amazing. This stuff works quick."
If not for the doubleheader, the Orioles might have tried to get through the next four days without a roster move. But because they are in the midst of playing 12 games in 10 days, they could not afford to wait.
The compressed schedule will force Johnson to use Scott Kamieniecki Tuesday on three days' rest. Kamieniecki, who threw 115 pitches in holding Seattle to one run in seven innings Friday, was given nine days off before making his Aug. 9 start.
The Orioles also contemplated promoting another pitcher in addition to Yan such as Brian Williams or Nerio Rodriguez, giving them a 13-man staff for this grueling stretch. But because outfielders Jeffrey Hammonds and Brady Anderson represent health questions, such a move was considered too risky.
Yan has emerged as one of the organization's biggest stars this season, going 11-4 with a 3.00 ERA. Since moving into the Rochester rotation June 17, the right-handed product of the Atlanta Braves and Montreal Expos is 8-1 with a 2.06 ERA in 11 starts.
Yan, who pitched four times in relief with the Orioles last May and August, makes his first major-league start less than two years after the Orioles purchased him from the Expos for $50,000.
Anderson to sit today, too
The Orioles lineup was missing Anderson because of soreness in his right knee, and second baseman Jeff Reboulet because of a slight muscle pull on his right side that bothered him when he ran. It didn't affect his swing, and he told Johnson he could play.
Hammonds started in place of Anderson and batted leadoff. He was followed in the order by Aaron Ledesma, who filled in for Reboulet with one hit and two walks.
The knee was bothering Anderson when he woke up yesterday. By the time he got to the clubhouse, he felt good enough to play and told Johnson to "keep an open mind." Johnson chose to keep the same lineup and said after the game that Anderson wouldn't start today either.
Patti takes PA turn
WBAL Radio's John Patti assumed the duties of public-address announcer at Camden Yards, the second member of the temporary rotation that will fill the role until a permanent replacement for Rex Barney is found after the season.
WJZ-TV sportscaster Chris Ely worked the first three games after a "silent" night in Barney's honor. And as he promised, no contracts were handed out to fans for making good catches on foul balls -- a tradition that was stopped with Barney's death.
There were about six plays in the stands worthy of recognition during the first few innings of the first game of Friday's doubleheader. One fan in the upper deck grabbed a liner at the railing, glanced toward the press box, then pointed toward the sky.
Patti will finish out the homestand, and the next rotation will be determined while the team is in Kansas City for a four-game series beginning Tuesday.
Around the horn
Jacobs said Roberto Alomar did some running yesterday and is progressing nicely as he continues to rehab his pulled right groin in Sarasota, Fla. Randy Myers' save was his 310th, tying him with Rich Gossage for seventh on the career list. B. J. Surhoff got his team-leading eighth outfield assist in the fifth inning. Cal Ripken went 2-for-4 and is 17-for-38 (.447) in his last 11 games. Anaheim optioned reliever Greg Cadaret to Triple-A Vancouver. Angels GM Bill Bavasi said there was nothing new to report on outfielder Tony Phillips, who was arrested last week and charged with cocaine possession. "He's not with our ballclub right now. He's currently on the active roster."
Pub Date: 8/17/97