Beattie says no teams in contact about Julio

ORIOLES NOTEBOOK

Giants may be in market for a closer

VP says deals difficult this time of year

April 30, 2005|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,SUN STAFF

Orioles executive vice president Jim Beattie said yesterday that he has not been contacted by other teams about the availability of reliever Jorge Julio.

It has been rumored that the San Francisco Giants, who lost closer and former Oriole Armando Benitez for fourth months because of a torn hamstring, might be interested in Julio, a hard-throwing right-hander with closer's experience.

The St. Louis Cardinals also have a closer, Jason Isringhausen, on the disabled list.

"When our bullpen sets up pretty well, we may get some phone calls, but at the same time, we're not looking to do anything," Beattie said. "The guys have set up really well."

Julio, who has 83 career saves but has been used in a setup role this season, hasn't allowed a run in his past seven appearances and has given up just one run in 12 outings this season. Another right-hander, Todd Williams, has not allowed an earned run this season.

In an 11-8 win over the Red Sox on Tuesday, the Orioles' bullpen held Boston scoreless for the last 5 2/3 innings.

"The bullpen has been tremendous," said Orioles manager Lee Mazzilli. "What the bullpen did in Boston really went unsung almost. They were as big as anyone in that game."

Beattie said trade talk is usually a little premature at this point in the season.

"It's pretty tough to make any [trades]," he said. "I think if you are going to get a pretty good player, you are going to have to wait a little while. ...

"I would assume that someone is not going to try to fill a hole if they are going to rob Peter to pay Paul. They are going to have to try and give some prospects and that means you are going to be essentially selling your season off already."

Hendricks close to a return

Orioles bullpen coach Elrod Hendricks, who has been away from the team since April 14 after suffering a minor stroke in St. Petersburg, Fla., is expected to return by early next week.

Beattie said Hendricks saw Dr. William Goldiner, the team physician, on Thursday, "and Dr. Goldiner was really amazed. Elrod said he hasn't felt this good in two years. We are excited to get him back. ... We have a two-week homestand and hopefully by a few more days, he'll be ready to come out."

Hendricks, 64, who also has been recovering from pneumonia, called Mazzilli before last night's game.

"He's eager to go," Mazzilli said. "He's a little frustrated that he can't get out there. He sounded great and hopefully next week, he'll be back."

Cabrera: 10 days off

Mazzilli said Daniel Cabrera, who was skipped in the rotation after Wednesday's rainout in Boston, will benefit from the time off between starts.

Cabrera, who started on April 22 in Toronto, is the scheduled starter on Tuesday at home against the Blue Jays. That means he'll have 10 days between starts.

Cabrera has been inconsistent in four starts this year. He went six innings and gave up eight hits and three earned runs to beat the New York Yankees on April 17. He followed that up by walking six and allowing five runs in 5 2/3 innings in a no-decision in Toronto.

"It will help," Mazzilli said. "He'll get a couple of side sessions in, just to work on a few things, rather than push everyone [in the rotation] back."

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