Fort Lauderdale, Fla. — Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-- --Jay Payton lay facedown on a massage table in the middle of the Orioles' clubhouse yesterday morning while strength and conditioning coach Jay Shiner tugged on his legs and twisted his torso. Payton was feeling pretty limber when he stood up.
Too bad he still had bronchitis.
No amount of bodywork was going to fix that problem.
Payton began feeling ill Tuesday night and was sent home early from camp the next day. He didn't report Thursday and still felt weak yesterday while his teammates boarded a bus for Jupiter.
"It's been a bad two days, but I wanted to get in today and just do some baseball stuff," he said. "I just played catch and I'm out of breath from doing that. But I'm going to try to take some swings off the tee and soft toss. I'd like to come in tomorrow and have somewhat of a normal day with the rest of the group and go from there.
"I couldn't move the other day when I first got it. I couldn't sleep. My body hurt, my head hurt, 103 temperature. I was messed up pretty bad. The last two days I've just been lying in bed, drinking fluids. I'm on my fourth day of antibiotics, so hopefully I'm not contagious."