3-for-4 Obando earns another start in right

Orioles notebook

April 19, 1993|By Ken Murray and Peter Schmuck | Ken Murray and Peter Schmuck,Staff Writers

Sherman Obando's first start at Oriole Park warrants a second look.

Obando, who made the giant leap from Double-A ball to the Orioles roster this spring, went 3-for-4 in yesterday's 4-3 victory over the California Angels and picked up his first major-league RBI.

Despite an eighth-inning base-running mistake, manager Johnny Oates said the performance earned Obando a second straight start in right field against the Chicago White Sox tomorrow night.

"I'm not ready to say I've picked a right fielder," Oates said. "And I don't know how long that's going to take. But based on his performance today, I think he earned the chance to be in the starting lineup against [left-hander] Wilson Alvarez Tuesday night.

"I had a reason for playing [Tim]Hulett today, even though [Leo] Gomez hit a three-run home run [Saturday]. And I had a reason for playing [Mark] McLemore even though [Harold] Reynolds had two hits [Saturday]. Well, I don't have a reason not to play Sherman on Tuesday night."

Batting eighth, Obando delivered a run-scoring single in the fourth to stake the Orioles to a 2-0 lead. He singled off Angels left-hander Mark Langston again in the sixth.

In the eighth, Oates let the right-handed Obando hit against right-handed reliever Julio Valera with Hulett on second and the Orioles down, 3-2.

He lined a 1-0 pitch through the middle, sending Hulett to third. Moments later, with Obando on second and the bases loaded, he committed a base-running mistake that was eerily reminiscent of Saturday's fiasco in a 7-5 loss to the Angels. Obando stayed too close to the bag and was unable to score when Brady Anderson drilled a shot off the right-field wall.

Obando was forced at home on the next play, but an infield single by Cal Ripken saved the day -- and the game -- for the Orioles.

"I made a mistake with my base running, but hopefully I'll work that out," Obando said after his first game at Oriole Park.

He appreciated the opportunity to bat in the eighth with left-handed hitter Chito Martinez on the bench.

"The confidence my manager showed in me makes me feel much better," Obando said.

A Rule V draft acquisition in the off-season, he has a chance to win the right-field job ahead of Martinez,Luis Mercedes and McLemore.

"I'm just looking for a guy to play every day in right field," Oates said. "I told all three, and Mac also, I'd try to give them all a chance to play out there as best I could. [But] I like what I've seen [of Obando]."

He's no favorite son

Closer Gregg Olson was greeted in the ninth inning with boos from the hometown crowd, struggled with his control, but still notched his fourth save of the season.

Olson walked Tim Salmon on four pitches, and threw a fifth straight ball to Rene Gonzales before getting the ex-Oriole to line into a double play. He got Damion Easley on a pop-up to end the game.

Asked if he heard the boos, Olson said, "How can't you? It's a matter of proving them wrong."

Boo-birds, Part II

David Segui made the most of his weekend opportunity, going 3-for-4 with three walks subbing for Glenn Davis at first base in games Saturday and yesterday.

But he didn't like to hear the fans boo Davis, the designated hitter, as they did during yesterday's game.

"I don't like that at all," Segui said. "Glenn is one of my best friends on the team.

"Glenn is the No. 1 first baseman. I understand that. I do what I can do. I'm not trying to take his job."

Still counting

Yesterday's crowd of 45,462 extended the Orioles' major-league record to 64 consecutive sellouts at Camden Yards. Attendance is up by 9,827 over the five-date figure from a year ago.

Herr's clinics

The Orioles and Herr's Potato Chips again will offer a series of free clinics for youngsters 6 to 12 years old in the Baltimore-Washington-Pennsylvania area. The clinics will feature instruction and autographs from Orioles players and coaches, along with snacks from Herr's. The first clinic is set for Saturday, May 1, at the Dallastown Little League & Spring Garden Township Little League in York, Pa.

Miscellaneous

Olson is 13-for-14 in save opportunities against the Angels in his career. That's second best to his 9-for-9 against the Milwaukee Brewers. . . . McLemore was attending a relative's funeral and was unavailable Saturday, but started at second yesterday. . . . The Orioles were 5-for-15 with runners in scoring position.

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