Orioles 5 Mets 1

March 30, 2009|By JEFF ZREBIEC


Robby Hammock didn't hurt his chances of claiming the backup catcher spot on the Orioles' Opening Day roster. In a battle for the position with Chad Moeller and Guillermo Rodriguez, Hammock hit a two-run homer in the sixth inning, his first of the spring. He was 1-for-3 overall and is hitting .296 this spring. Though Moeller gets high marks for his defense and Rodriguez his throwing arm, Hammock is the best hitter and most versatile player of the group.


It wasn't easy, and it rarely is for Orioles' closer George Sherrill. However, the All-Star reliever, who has struggled this spring, turned in a scoreless fourth inning. He allowed two hits but got out of the inning with the help of a base-running blunder by the Mets' Jeremy Reed, who was tagged out in a rundown after straying off first base. In 6 1/3 innings this spring, Sherrill has allowed 15 hits and walked four.


The Orioles play their only Grapefruit League night game tonight against the New York Mets in Port St. Lucie. Right-hander Alfredo Simon, who is one of the front-runners to earn one of three undecided spots in the Orioles' Opening Day rotation, will get the start opposite Mets left-hander Oliver Perez. Chris Ray, Dennis Sarfate and Brian Bass are also scheduled to pitch for the Orioles.

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