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Early Orioles notes: Castillo's obstacles, Wright's foundation and bullpen survival with Jimenez

In monitoring catcher Welington Castillo’s recovery from a testicular injury when a deflected pitch hit him in the groin, Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he plans to bring in Caleb Joseph for advice on how he came back from the same injury.

“It’s probably something we’re going to talk to Caleb a little bit [about] as we get closer. What, do you not squat as good? Do you stand up more? I don’t know. Actually it’s probably a conversation we should have with Caleb and probably will. We’re lucky in some aspect to have somebody who has gone through it. It’s one of those things you don’t wish on anybody.”

Castillo was injured Monday when a pitch deflected off New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius and hit him in the groin area, prompting a postgame emergency room visit. He was placed on the 10-day disabled list the following day and, even though he is eligible to return Saturday, that will be a challenge.

Castillo played catch Saturday but Showalter said he’s still sore, and like Joseph, his biggest challenge before his return will be getting back into a crouch behind the plate, and also the mental hurdle that comes with getting back there after that sort of injury.

“I don’t want to lessen it, but it wasn’t as serious and as recuperative as Caleb’s was. I was talking to him in the replay room. He’s been in there watching the pitchers and everything and he’s still a little sore. What is this, day four or five? In a perfect world, he’d catch day nine and 10, somewhere in there, so he could go right from there and be on time. You really don’t want to test it out in a big league game, no pun intended.”

Wright raising dementia awareness

The Wright State of Mind, a nonprofit created by Orioles right-hander Mike Wright and his sister Tiffany created to raise awareness, research dollars and help caregivers for those with dementia, set up a community booth along the Camden Yards concourse Sunday.

Wright’s mother, Sherry, was diagnosed with dementia two years ago, and a main focus of the organization is to inform caregivers about the disease.  

“It’s research and also for caregivers to actually get people prepared to take care of their family members and just make it a better all-around situation when the time comes,” Wright said. “When my sister had to move in with my mom, she really didn’t know what to expect. She didn’t know what route my mom was going to take and didn’t really know how to be prepared for it. … So it’s our goal to really enlighten people in this situation and really help them ... get through this as much as possible. Dementia it means something is wrong with the brain, and Alzheimer’s is like 80 percent of those patients, so all the research goes to Alzheimer’s, and right now I think the caregivers are very important.”

This was the second time the organization has had a booth at Camden Yards this year. The club had a booth in spring training, too.

Showalter: Everyone in 'pen must pitch

Showalter said he had few options other than right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez in the eighth inning of Saturday night’s 4-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox.

Showalter planned to pitch Brad Brach and Darren O’Day only with a lead, and he said Sunday that right-hander Mychal Givens was unavailable, as was Mike Wright after pitching two straight nights. A one-run deficit turned into a three-run hole after Jimenez allowed two runs in the eighth.

“In the American League, if someone is in your bullpen, he’s going to have to pitch or else you’re not going to have a bullpen because guys like Mike and Darren and Brad won’t be here at the All-Star break. We have to keep them away from the league leaders in appearances,” Showalter said.

Jimenez hadn't worked since Sunday in Houston and was unavailable for the next several days after throwing 93 pitches.

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