CLEVELAND — The Orioles hope to salvage their seven-game road trip with a series win here this afternoon.
Right-hander Bud Norris will make his first major league start since May 10. He made three minor league rehab starts, most recently throwing four scoreless innings on Tuesday at Triple-A Norfolk. Norris' biggest challenge was gaining weight -- he weighed as low at 202 lbs. after pitching in the 215-220 lb. range -- and getting back the power in his legs.
Norris said he also used the time off to refine his mechanics and said he feels like he's found his arm slot. Both Norris and the Orioles hope that time off leads to Norris rebounding from a rocky 1-4 start to the season.
"It can," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Ask me at about 4 o'clock. He wasn't real happy with his slider before and a couple of his outings he had a really good one. Not only was he saying [that], but the people that were there were talking about it. Probably one of the key innings for him is getting through the first inning and get some of the emotion under control."
Second baseman Jonathan Schoop (right knee injury) is getting his share of at bats in extended spring games down in Sarasota, Fla., and while Showalter has been reluctant to give a timetable on his return, he said he's not far from going on a minor league rehab assignment.
Orioles vice president of baseball operations Brady Anderson is in Sarasota working with the team's injured players, including Schoop.
"He's got plenty of at bats," Showalter said. "If you watched him run straight ahead, there's nothing you'd really [notice]. Brady is timing everything. It's kind of a little tentativeness when he takes a turn, maybe the pivot. That's the last thing that's going to come, getting over that part of it."
"Brady is supposed to be back Tuesday," Showalter said. "He may stay there with him if he thinks he's getting closer. I told him to just stay there."
Showalter said the reports on right-hander Kevin Gausman's first minor-league rehab outing on Friday were positive. Gausman threw three scoreless innings, allowing just one hit and striking out four. He threw 40 pitches, 32 of them strikes.
He will make his next start Thursday at Bowie, going four or five innings. He could be an option to return to the big league club as a starter after that start, but more likely after a third start as he continues to build his inning count.
Manny Machado 3B
Travis Snider LF
Adam Jones CF
Matt Wieters C
Chris Davis 1B
Delmon Young RF
Jimmy Paredes DH
J.J. Hardy SS
Ryan Flaherty 2B
Bud Norris RHP
Jason Kipnis 2B
Carlos Santana 1B
David Murphy LF
Brandon Moss RF
Nick Swisher DH
Lonnie Chisenhall 3B
Yan Gomes C
Michael Bourn CF
Alex Aviles SS
Carlos Carrasco RHP