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Clevenger has impressed O's behind the plate

BALTIMORE -- Steve Clevenger made his 12th start of the season behind the plate on Monday night, a sight that will be more common for the Orioles with starter Matt Wieters placed on the disabled list (right elbow discomfort) on Sunday.

And while manager Buck Showalter was frank about executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette also exploring external options, the O's have been impressed with how Clevenger has fared.

"There was some unknown and he exceed expectations, I shouldn't say expectations, but in Spring Training we were really happy he could be that guy," Showalter said of Clevenger, who won the backup job this spring. "He was really engaged in catching. We've had some guys in the past that were all about their offense. They were driving in one and letting in two or three by their decisions."

Clevenger, who loaded his iPad up with tape of all of the organization's pitchers before the 2013 season ended, studied up this winter, and it showed with an impressive spring. But filling in for the everyday guy -- and an All-Star in Wieters -- is a tall task.

"It's unreasonable to expect us to fill Matt Wieters' shoes and find a Gold Glove-caliber catcher in-season," Duquette said of the O's search for catching. "But these guys [in Clevenger and Caleb Joseph] have been good for us so far. They've done a nice job."

Added Showalter: "There's still some unknown with [Clevenger]. What's it going to be like to catch five, six days in a row?

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli.
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