The Orioles sent three more players out from big league camp on Wednesday. Catcher Johnny Monell and pitcher Suk-min Yoon were optioned to Norfolk, while outfielder Xavier Paul, in camp as a non-roster invitee, was reassigned there. With Monell being optioned, the backup catcher position looks to belong to Steve Clevenger.
Yoon pitched two innings in Wednesday's spring training game, a 7-4 loss to Tampa Bay. He allowed a solo home run to Jayson Nix that may have been somewhat wind-aided. It was only his second spring appearance. He'll be heading into the minor league camp so that he can throw more innings, according to manager Buck Showalter.
The big news of the day is that Manny Machado will be seeing his doctor in Los Angeles on Thursday to find out whether his knee is recovering as hoped. Initially, this was thought to be the appointment where he would either be cleared to play or not. However, it looks like even if the doctor gives the OK, the Orioles may still be a bit more cautious:
Buck reminded reporters that Machado won't magically be cleared to play games tomorrow after knee exam in LA. Always been up to #orioles— Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) March 19, 2014
Despite what he says there, this feels like a reversal from what they've led everyone to believe up until now, that it would be up to the doctor to clear him. Hopefully the doctor and the Orioles can agree that there's good news and start getting Machado eased back into games. He may not quite get ready for Opening Day, but if he's able to start up on games soon, he should be ready to go not too far into the season.
There are eight Grapefruit League games left, plus one exhibition against Norfolk, before the regular season gets underway for the O's. With Yoon being sent down, that's one name removed from the bullpen competition. It's hard to say how the Orioles are leaning. There are a number of players who have no options remaining who would have to be squeezed in. There's not much time left to figure out who will stay and who will go.
The three roster moves leave the Orioles with 43 players in camp, including eight non-roster invitees.