Pedro Beato, the Orioles' supplemental pick in last year's draft and one of their emerging pitching prospects, is expected to miss his next start with short-season Single-A Delmarva after leaving Friday night's game with a leg injury.
And the Orioles consider themselves lucky.
The initial reports indicate that Beato, 20, suffered a mild strain to his hamstring, which forced him to leave after 3 2/3 innings in one of his more disappointing outings of the season.
"He should be fine," said David Stockstill, director of minor league operations. "It's very slight. It shouldn't take that many days.
"It's a big relief that it's nothing serious. It's nothing major."
His last start was no laughing matter.
The right-hander allowed six earned runs and seven hits before exiting with two outs in the fourth inning. In his previous appearance, he surrendered only an unearned run and three hits in seven innings, striking out eight and earning the win. Before that, he allowed seven runs and eight hits, with four walks, in five innings. And before that, he permitted two runs in seven innings.
Go back another start, to Aug. 2, and Beato allowed five runs and walked four in 2 2/3 innings.
"He's had his outstanding moments and his up-and-down moments," Stockstill said. "It's about learning how to be out there every day the way a professional has to be. It's a learning process."
Beato, who's 7-8 with a 4.10 ERA, likely will move up one level to Single-A Frederick next year.
"It's hard to say, but that would be very reasonable," Stockstill said.
Hayden Penn made his first start for Norfolk on Tuesday since having surgery to remove a bone spur from his elbow. He allowed two earned runs in five innings, struck out four and got the win. ... Mike Cervenak hit his team-leading 15th home run Friday. He had 149 hits entering yesterday, tied for first in the International League. He was batting .341 in his past 10 games before yesterday. ... Jon Knott was hitting .375 with two homers, six RBIs and eight runs scored in his past 10 games, and .314 in his past 36 to improve his average from .194 to .250 since June 19. ... Catcher Alberto Castillo extended his streak of reaching base at home to 24 games, though he was batting only .259 during that time. ... Eider Torres was batting .406 with seven RBIs in eight games. ... Left-hander Kurt Birkins has a 3.07 ERA. He allowed three earned runs or fewer in 17 of 19 starts, and was 2-0 with a 1.98 ERA and 20 strikeouts in his past four outings.
Catcher Eli Whiteside has been shut down for the rest of the season after suffering a concussion in a collision at home plate. "He still has a lot of tests to undergo to make sure there are no recurring effects," Stockstill said, "and we're not going to take any chances with him." ... Luis Montanez, who began the year at Norfolk, had his 15-game hitting streak stopped. He batted .373 with a .439 on-base percentage. ... Going into the weekend, Luis Jimenez was batting .360 with 10 homers and 44 RBIs since July 1. ... Nolan Reimold, back after a second stint on the disabled list with an oblique injury, was batting .290 with three homers, six RBIs and eight runs scored in nine games. ... Jeff Fiorentino was batting .395 with three homers and 12 RBIs in 11 games heading into the weekend. He was hitting .350 since the break. ... Oscar Alvarez was 5-2 with a 3.92 ERA in 10 road games and 5-4 with a 5.53 ERA in 13 home games. ... Fredy Deza had allowed one earned run or fewer in six of his past eight starts before yesterday.
Pasadena native Chorye Spoone is second in the Carolina League with 116 strikeouts and fifth with a 3.52 ERA and 138 innings pitched. He's gone seven innings or more in eight of his past nine starts. His ERA is 3.06 in 11 starts since the break, compared with 4.01 in 13 games during the first half. ... Shortstop Blake Davis ranked eighth in the league with a .289 average before the weekend. His average jumped to .316 in 40 road games, with a .399 on-base percentage and a .447 slugging average. ... Ryan Finan ranked third in the league with a .386 on-base percentage. He's batting .303 in 52 home games. ... Catcher Zach Dillon was hitting .379 with a .422 on-base percentage and .603 slugging average this month. ... Jonathan Tucker was hitting .302 in 61 home games and .226 in 54 road games.
Daniel Figueroa reached base safely in 43 straight games, the second-longest streak in the South Atlantic League, going into the weekend. He was batting .354 with a .480 on-base percentage during the streak, which began June 30. ... Brandon Tripp ranked fourth in the league with a .540 slugging average. ... Bill Rowell went hitless in eight of nine games, lowering his average from .283 to .268. ... Brandon Snyder was batting .323 with a .480 slugging average since the break after hitting .258 with a .373 slugging average in the first half. ... Kyle Schmidt ranks fifth in the league with 132 strikeouts. ... Chad Thall was fourth with 17 saves.
Aberdeen's Fernando De Nabal didn't allow a run in his first five appearances this month, striking out 14 in 13 innings. ... Mick Mattaliano posted a 1.26 ERA with 12 strikeouts in 14 1/3 innings, holding opponents to a .160 average. ... Anthony Martinez was hitting .472 in his past 10 games. ... Bluefield's Sean Gleason was fourth in the Appalachian League with 61 2/3 innings pitched and seventh with a 2.92 ERA. ... Matt Tucker was second with a .415 on-base percentage, fourth with a .539 slugging average and fifth with a .312 average. ... The Gulf Coast Orioles' Tyler Kolodny ranked eighth in the league with a .318 average and fifth with a .530 slugging average. ... Elvin Polanco led the league with 18 doubles and ranked second with 66 hits and 23 extra-base hits, and third with 35 RBIs.