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September 12, 2010

X-rays on Bell negative; Snyder ready for first start; other pre-game notes

Third baseman Josh Bell got some good news today when X-rays on his right hand turned up no issues. Bell, who got hit in the hand by a Miguel Cabrera hard grounder in the sixth inning Saturday, is not in today's lineup, but manager Buck Showalter said that he is available to play.

Brandon Snyder will make his first big league start today at first base. It's not exactly an easy debut with Tigers ace Justin Verlander on the mound, but I'm sure Snyder will take it. He's only played one inning defensively since his Sept. 1 promotion.

Showalter also is giving shortstop Cesar Izturis the day off and will go with Robert Andino at short rather than Julio Lugo. The Orioles manager has really liked what he's seen defensively from Andino both in his one start in New York and during pre-game infield practice. Jake Fox will also get the start at catcher, and not Craig Tatum.

Closer Koji Uehara, who notched saves on both Friday and Saturday, is likely not available today. Uehara has pitched in six of the Orioles' last eight games. During that span, Michael Gonzalez has pitched only twice and Alfredo Simon only once. Uehara's durability has certainly been a surprise to me after he was supposedly unable to pitch in back-to-back games earlier this season.

And one quick stat: Jeremy Guthrie won his 10th game on Saturday, becoming the first Orioles pitcher to record three-or-more consecutive seasons with 10-or-more victories since Mike Mussina did it nine straight years from 1992 to 2000.

Posted by Jeff Zrebiec at 11:33 AM | | Comments (0)

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About the bloggers
A Baltimore native, Dan Connolly has been covering sports for 14 years, and baseball and the Orioles for 10 seasons, including the past six with The Sun. His first year covering baseball on a daily basis was Cal Ripken Jr.'s final season as a player. It's believed that is just a coincidence.

Steve Gould is an assistant sports editor for The Sun, overseeing Orioles coverage. The Columbia native joined The Sun as a sports copy editor in 2006 after graduating from the University of Maryland.

Peter Schmuck has been covering baseball for a lot longer than Steve Gould has been on this earth. He is now a general sports columnist, but has been a beat writer covering three major league teams (the Dodgers, Angels and Orioles) and also spent a decade as the Sun's national baseball writer. If you want more of his insight on the Orioles and other sports issues, check out his personal blog -- The Schmuck Stops Here.

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