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Could Brian Matusz make a quick return to Baltimore?

Brian Matusz is making a case to come back to Baltimore.

after his first start in Triple-A Norfolk on Friday. Tides outfielder Nate McLouth took the honors for Batter of the Week.

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Matusz tossed a complete game shutout in a 4-0 win over Charlotte, surrendering four hits and a walk while striking out four. Eighty-one of his 114 pitches were strikes, and he outdueled rehabbing Phillip Humber, who threw a perfect game for the Chicago White Sox earlier this season.

The 25-year-old Matusz had struggled mightily with the Orioles in June, losing six of his last seven starts, including his final five outings, before being sent down.

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Matusz’s numbers in Baltimore had been anything but stellar -- 5-10 with a 5.42 ERA and a 1.71 WHIP in 2012. After opening the year 0-3, he settled down in May, winning four of his next six starts. He gave up more than three runs just once in that time to claw back to 4-5.

After perhaps his finest start of the season, a 2-1 win over Tampa where he surrendered just a run and two hits in 7 1/3 innings, it all went south for Matusz. He didn’t last a full six innings in his next five outings, giving up 20 earned runs, 41 hits and 13 walks in 21 1/3 innings of work, and was sent down to Norfolk.

It's just one start, but if he continues to be efficient in Triple-A, Matusz will likely get another shot with the Orioles this season. He still has a long way to go before he reaches the level Baltimore management hoped he would when they selected him fourth overall in 2008, but Matusz's first start in Triple-A proves he's poised to show his worth on the field and not let getting sent down affect him.

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