The Orioles will face three relievers as starters this weekend at Tropicana Field against the Tampa Bay Rays, with right-hander Sergio Romo the announced starter Friday and Sunday and Ryne Stanek getting the Saturday start.
While that wasn't announced before Thursday's game began, manager Buck Showalter said he already had his lineup card made out for such possibilities, and he has a lot of practice at such.
"We do that in spring training every year," Showalter said. "But then again, we have, what, 68 players in camp? So, it's something that we've talked and thought about, and we've got some thoughts on it from our perspective. It's their prerogative. I'd probably do a similar thing. Guys that have run extended spring and spring trainings and whatever, from this standpoint, it's kind of nothing that we haven't already done.
"I've always had this [idea]. I almost did it in the playoffs years ago with Joe Saunders — starting a guy, facing one hitter and taking him out when you're carrying like 11 pitchers for one game. There's a lot of things you can do short-term that you can't really carry over long-term. But they may be able to because of the optionability of their club."
Orioles reliever Darren O'Day is tentatively set for a cortisone shot in his right elbow Friday in a move the team hopes will speed up what Showalter has called a slow recovery process from a hyperextension suffered earlier this month.
"We're leaning toward getting an injection with Darren," Showalter said, with the final decision to come Friday when the Orioles gather again in Florida. "Probably cortisone. He's had great response to that over the years with Dr. [Brian] Schofield [in Sarasota, Fla.] I know he had that wrist thing, I know he had that forearm strain that really helped it speed along. I think that's got a chance to be tomorrow. It's not set in stone, but that's where they're leaning — Dr. Schofield and Dr. [Mike] Jacobs think that might be a step we should take."
O'Day went on the disabled list retroactive to May 6 with a hyperextension suffered when his arm hit someone while warming up in the bullpen. Showalter said Wednesday that the team was looking at a similar injury suffered by then-Seattle Mariners reliever Tom Wilhelmsen for a blueprint for a recovery, and his took over three weeks.
Likewise, Schofield, a doctor the team works with during spring training, will also look at outfielder Mark Trumbo, who missed games Wednesday and Thursday with a knee injury. Showalter said Wednesday that the team felt it had a good handle on what the problem was. Trumbo believes he injured it sliding into second base Tuesday.
"I know [head athletic trainer Brian Ebel] is leaning toward getting an MRI on Trumb's knee, just to be on the safe side," Showalter said. "We don't expect anything, but similarly sore today. We expected that with a quick turnaround for the day game. Dr. Schofield's going to see both of them tomorrow, our doctor down in Sarasota, is going to come over after his work day."