According to Roch Kubatko of MASNsports, Baltimore Orioles’ closer Zach Britton has improved in terms of his condition. Britton began feeling discomfort in his left side towards the beginning of camp, and was in essence shut down. For the time being, it appears that he’s dodged an oblique injury…again, for the time being.
It’s tough to say where, if anywhere, this goes. But needless to say it’s something to watch as the Grapefruit League “season” wears on. Keep in mind also that this isn’t necessarily a setback for Britton in terms of time. Teams reported a bit earlier than normal this year due to the World Baseball Classic. So whether or not he would have been playing in games at this point is another story.
Catcher Welington Castillo is in this afternoon’s starting lineup, which is a good sign. Castillo, as was reported here on this column earlier today, woke up with neck spasms yesterday and was unable to play. I suppose we’ve all done it; slept the wrong way and suffered from a stiff neck the next day. But the fact that he’s playing today means no harm no foul. So that’s a bit of good news for the Birds.
I will be interested to see how far into today’s game Wade Miley is allowed to go. At this stage of spring most starting pitchers are getting two innings, and that’s what the first two games yielded. However Miley is probably slated for the rotation, so might he be in the game for a bit longer? Possibly, but we’ll have to see.
I say this every year, and several times at that. However fans should keep in mind while watching these early spring games and results that pitchers are ahead of the hitters. So the focus for a lot of hitters in games such as today’s is going to be timing. So strikeouts might pile up, and runs might be hard to come by. But at this stage of the game that isn’t a sign of any sort of pending offensive doom.