Hale healthy, ready for Baysox return

The Baltimore Sun

With his latest injury out of the way, one that's not as severe as some in his past, Double-A Bowie right-hander Beau Hale is ready to be a starter again.

Hale, the 14th overall selection in the 2000 draft out of the University of Texas, was activated from the disabled list Saturday after missing a month with a strained pectoral muscle. He hasn't pitched since May 29 but should make his next start tomorrow.

"It will be limited in the number of pitches he throws," said David Stockstill, director of minor league operations. "He'll probably go two or three innings, and it will take three or four starts to get him built back up."

Hale missed the entire 2003 and 2004 seasons after undergoing two surgical procedures on his right shoulder. He appeared in 22 games at Single-A Frederick in 2005 and a career-high 31 between Frederick and Bowie last season.

The Orioles presented Hale with their inaugural Moe Drabowsky Comeback Player of the Year Award in 2006 after he went 6-6 with a 3.33 ERA for the season.

Consistency has eluded Hale this year. He's 5-3 with a 4.37 ERA in 11 games. He has allowed 64 hits in 55 2/3 innings, walking 19 and striking out 37, and opponents are batting .294 against him.

In his last start, Hale allowed two runs and 10 hits in six innings against Reading.

"It's very unfortunate because he was pitching well," Stockstill said. "He got off to an outstanding start and we wanted him in the rotation every five days to see how he did with his durability. But fortunately, this injury didn't have anything to do with his past injuries."

Triple-A Norfolk

Garrett Olson continues to make a strong case for being promoted to the Orioles. He pitched seven scoreless innings Friday night, allowing two hits and striking out 10 in a 7-0 win over Pawtucket. He leads the International League with 104 innings pitched and has struck out 94. ... Corner infielder Mike Cervenak ranked second in the league with 90 hits heading into Saturday. ... Outfielder Jason Dubois, who opened the season on the disabled list with a pulled hamstring, was hitting .361 with three homers, four RBIs and nine runs scored in his past 10 games. ... James Johnson had pitched at least six innings in his past five starts. ... Left-hander Kurt Birkins ranked seventh in the league with a 3.18 ERA. He struck out 15 in his past 13 innings before being called up Saturday.

Double-A Bowie

Outfielder Val Majewski was batting .313 with 14 RBIs in June heading into the weekend. He hit .379 over a 10-game stretch to take over the team lead with a .285 average. ... Outfielder Jeff Fiorentino was batting .314 with 14 runs scored and a .355 on-base percentage in June. ... Third baseman Oscar Salazar was third in the Eastern League with 51 RBIs and fourth with 13 homers and 33 extra-base hits. ... Outfielder Matt Cepicky was batting .357 with six runs in his past nine games. ... Second baseman Paco Figueroa led the team with 10 steals, 32 walks and a .369 on-base percentage.

Single-A Frederick

Going into the weekend, David Hernandez (88), Chorye Spoone (73) and Jason Berken (66) ranked first, second and fifth in the Carolina League in strikeouts. Spoone, a Pasadena native, was eighth in the league with a 3.58 ERA. ... Dan Lonsberry was 2-0 with a 3.95 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 13 2/3 innings in seven June games. ... First baseman Ryan Finan was batting .343 with a .459 on-base percentage and a .471 slugging percentage in June. ... Outfielder Arturo Rivas continued to lead the Keys with a .317 average.

Single-A Delmarva

Fourth-round pick Timothy Bascom had a sterling professional debut last Monday, pitching five perfect innings and striking out nine. ... Third baseman Billy Rowell, last year's first-round pick, was hitting .333 in 12 home games. ... First baseman Chris Vinyard led the Shorebirds with 77 hits, 19 doubles and 53 RBIs in 72 games. ... Brad Bergesen was seventh in the South Atlantic League with a 2.40 ERA. ... Left-hander Wilfrido Perez struck out 47 batters in 32 innings. He had a 1.69 ERA and nine saves in 13 games.

Short-season teams

Aberdeen shortstop Tyler Henson was tied for third in the New York-Penn League with 15 hits. He was batting .366 in his past 10 games. ... Third baseman Franklin Gonzalez led the IronBirds with three doubles and seven RBIs in nine games. ... Center fielder Matthew Angle hit safely in nine of 10 games and had a .404 on-base percentage during that stretch. ... Bluefield third baseman Matthew Tucker led the Appalachian League with 11 runs, eight extra-base hits, five doubles, two triples and a .794 slugging percentage. He ranked second with 15 hits and third with a .441 average, 10 RBIs and a .537 on-base percentage. ... Outfielder Kraig Binick led the league with 16 hits, 11 runs and two triples. ... Gulf Coast center fielder Arthur Bonevacia batted .435 over five games. Overall, he was hitting .314 with a team-leading 11 hits.

roch.kubatko@baltsun.com

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