Mora Sits Out Again

ORIOLES NOTEBOOK

Orioles Notebook

Third Baseman, 37, Requests Game Off, His Second Straight

July 03, 2009|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,jeff.zrebiec@baltsun.com

ANAHEIM, Calif. - - Orioles third baseman Melvin Mora was out of the lineup Thursday for a second consecutive game after he asked Dave Trembley for a night off, according to the manager.

"Because of the length of the trip coming out here, he wanted another day as well, so he's getting it," said Trembley, who also didn't play Mora in Wednesday's series finale against the Boston Red Sox. "It's not very often that somebody asks me for a day off. It's more times that I see it and I go to that player and say, 'Hey, I think tomorrow we should give you a break and I'm going to play so-and-so.' But I like the lines of communication being open. I don't mind someone coming to me and saying, 'I need a break today.' Hey, if that helps, I'm all for it."

Mora didn't specify the reason he wasn't in the lineup, though he did say he was healthy. "I don't know if it will clear my head or whatever, but I [will] come today to work out and see what happens," he said.

Mora, 37, is batting .266 with two homers and 22 RBIs. He entered Thursday 0-for-9 in his past three games, and he hasn't hit a homer in 43 games, tying the longest stretch of his career.

"I don't worry about it," he said. "The only thing that I worry about is every time I see the paper, I see the Orioles 13 or 15 games behind. When you see that, I'm not able to do my job and help my team win some games. I don't worry about home runs. I just worry about the team being in last place."

Asked whether Mora might see reduced playing time, especially after Ty Wigginton hit .405 (17-for-42) in June, and homered on Wednesday, Trembley said: "I don't see that. I see Wigginton playing better. I see me having to get opportunities for Wigginton to get in there."

Still early on Sano

The Orioles did not make an offer Thursday to Dominican shortstop Miguel Angel Sano, a 16-year-old who is considered one of the top international free agents available, though they probably will in the coming days.

Thursday marked the first day teams are allowed to sign international free agents, but the Orioles, like some other teams, are waiting for Major League Baseball to conclude its investigation into Sano's age before tendering an offer. The Orioles, who worked out Sano for three days at their Dominican baseball academy and came away impressed, want to make sure there are no discrepancies that might make it difficult for Sano to get a visa to get into the country.

Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail said Thursday about Sano, "We have interest pending MLB's investigation."

The Pittsburgh Pirates and Minnesota Twins are believed to be the front-runners for Sano, and the Twins reportedly offered him a signing bonus of approximately $3 million. The Orioles have put a figure on what they believe Sano is worth, but MacPhail wouldn't offer any specifics.

MacPhail said the Orioles also have scouted left-handed pitcher Aroldis Chapman, a 21-year-old who defected from Cuba this week. They are interested but likely won't be involved in the bidding if his price tag is anywhere near the $30 million that is being reported.

Scott Moore sighting

Triple-A Norfolk third baseman Scott Moore, who lives about 15 minutes away from Angel Stadium, stopped by Thursday to meet with former teammates and team officials. Moore had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb, and he was hoping to rejoin the Tides next month. However, he acknowledged that it's not looking good and he might miss the rest of the season.

Moore will be a six-year minor league free agent after the season, so it's conceivable that he has played his last game with the organization.

"It's tough to get through, but I feel like if I could have played well and did my job when I got on the field, some good things can happen," he said.

"Instead of sitting at home and talking to you guys as a visitor in the clubhouse. It's tough, but it's happened and you have to move on. There's nothing I can do about it now."

Around the horn

Adam Jones returned to the lineup after missing Wednesday's game following his collision with the center-field wall Tuesday. ... Not that this should come as a surprise, but Trembley reiterated that Double-A Bowie left-hander Brian Matusz, one of the organization's top pitching prospects, will be shut down and sent home once the minor league season ends ... Norfolk pitchers Chris Tillman and Jim Miller will represent the International League in the Triple-A All-Star Game. ... The Orioles granted Bobby Livingston his release. The Baysox left-hander had a stipulation in his contract that he could become a free agent if he weren't in the majors by July 1. Livingston was 6-2 with a 3.62 ERA in 13 outings for Bowie.

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.