PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Orioles catcher Matt Wieters was scheduled to take live batting practice on Saturday, his first time doing so since he aggravated his surgically repaired right elbow a week ago."We hope that he's moving toward the field in a week at most, but who knows?" Orioles manager
PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Orioles catcher Matt Wieters was scheduled to take live batting practice on Saturday, his first time doing so since he aggravated his surgically repaired right elbow a week ago.
"We hope that he's moving toward the field in a week at most, but who knows?" Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "It could be eight days. It could be five."
• Orioles Spring Training info
It looked like Wieters would be facing a much longer delay when he felt discomfort making a throw to second last Saturday. But once an X-ray and an MRI came back negative, he began working his way back. Wieters progressed to taking swings off a pitching machine on Friday, but he still has not resumed throwing.
If Wieters is ready to hit in a game before he is ready to get back behind the plate, Showalter said the club would consider having him work as the designated hitter in Minor League games.
Around the horn
• Right-hander Kevin Gausman, who made his second Grapefruit League start on Wednesday, is scheduled to pitch in a Minor League game on Monday. Righty Ubaldo Jimenez will do the same on Tuesday. It remains to be seen what the Orioles will do with righty Yovani Gallardo, who was scheduled to start Saturday's game against the Rays, which was cancelled due to rain in the top of the first inning.
• Showalter expects outfielder Xavier Avery (hip flexor) to be out at least a day or two. Avery hurt himself in Thursday night's game against the Twins.
"You know, Xavier's a tough nut," Showalter said. "If he's got something [hurting], you can multiply it. He's a really physically tough guy."
With Avery out, the Orioles brought Julio Borbon from Minor League camp to start Saturday's game. Borbon, leading off and playing center field, flew out against Tampa Bay's Chris Archer before the game was called.
Borbon, who has spent parts of four seasons in the Majors with the Rangers and Cubs, played 114 games for the Orioles' Triple-A Norfolk affiliate last year before re-signing to a Minor League deal. Showalter described him as a "plus-plus defender and plus-plus runner."
Up next for the Orioles: Following the rainout, the Orioles and Rays will hope Mother Nature cooperates on Sunday, when they again are scheduled to face off, this time at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla. The 1:05 p.m. ET game will be broadcast live on MLB.TV. Right-hander Chris Tillman makes his second Grapefruit League start for the O's after dealing with a minor hip flexor injury early in camp. He allowed two runs over 1 2/3 innings against Toronto on Tuesday.
Up next for the Rays: Right-hander Jhan Marinez will start for the Rays on Sunday. Also expected to see action are right-handers Kyle McPherson, Tyler Sturdevant, Ryan Garton, Parker Markel, and Mark Sappington.
Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB.