Even though spring training doesn’t officially begin for another five days, many players have already gathered in Sarasota, Fla. Minor league camp won’t open until March 2 for pitchers and catchers and March 7 for position players.
Because of split-squad games and players missing for the World Baseball Classic, manager Buck Showalter will have a bevy of extra players on hand beginning Feb. 18.
Showalter likes to look at as many players as possible, and while not all players can be invited to major league camp, it’s his chance to check some out.
Last year, Stu Pomeranz, who wasn’t invited to major league camp, was so impressive in his unscheduled visits that he got to pitch for the Orioles during the season.
Twenty-nine players are on the roster. Branden Kline, the team’s second round draft pick from Frederick, Md. is one of the pitchers. Tim Berry, Tim Boleska, Parker Bridwell, Zach Davies, Rob Delaney, Jason Gurka, Devin Jones, Zach Petersime, Chris Petrini, Matt Taylor, Tyler Wilson and Zach Zinicola are the others. Several of the pitchers were signed over the winter from Independent Leagues.
There are five catchers, including the recently signed Zane Chavez, another Independent League veteran. Caleb Joseph, Michael Ohlman, Steel Russell and Brian Ward are the others. Joseph, Ohlman and Ward were in major league camp last year and Russell is the son of Orioles bench coach John Russell.
The infielders are Torsten Boss, Buck Britton, Nick Delmonico, Tyler Kelly, Adrian Marin, Christian Walker, Brandon Waring and Zelous Wheeler. The outfielders are Glynn Davis, Johnny Reuttiger and Branden Webb.
Bowie manager Gary Kendall is the camp coordinator. Among those assisting are Frederick manager Ryan Minor and Aberdeen manager Matt Merullo.
-Ohlman and Webb are playing for the Australian Baseball League championship from Friday-Sunday. Both are with Perth, and Ohlman is batting .317with six home runs and 21 RBIs.
-According to Baseball America’s Matt Eddy, the Orioles re-signed right-handed pitcher Matt Bischoff to a minor league contract.