Tejada to begin hitting off tee, fielding ground balls Tuesday
SEATTLE -- Miguel Tejada is on his way back to the Baltimore Orioles.
Interim manager Dave Trembley said the star shortstop would likely begin hitting off a tee and fielding ground balls Tuesday when he rejoins the team in Seattle. It will be his first baseball work since a pitch thrown by San Diego's Doug Brocail broke the radius bone near the inside of Tejada's wrist on June 20.
Tejada played in 1,152 straight games -- the fifth-longest streak in baseball history -- before being placed on the disabled list June 22.
Trembley said Tejada will hit off a tee, do some fielding drills and perhaps hit soft-tossed pitches before another X-ray is taken on July 24. If that all goes well, Tejada will advance to what Trembley called "phase 2 of his rehabilitation" -- live batting practice and perhaps a minor league rehabilitation stint.
The Orioles originally estimated Tejada wouldn't be able to resume baseball activities for at least a month, and could be sidelined well into August. So it was more good news for Baltimore, which entered Monday on a three-game winning streak and was 12-10 since Trembley replaced fired manager Sam Perlozzo.
"The guy's a proven star in the game, a .300 hitter, a proven hitter in the middle of the lineup. The team's going to be better with him back," Trembley said of Tejada, before adding it was too early to estimate when Tejada would go on a minor league assignment.
As for other injured Orioles, Steve Trachsel is on track to start Saturday at Oakland. That means Garrett Olson, the 23-year-old pitcher who earned his first major league win Sunday, is likely headed back to the minors.
"Olson's got to pitch. Whether it'd be here or at Triple-A, he's got to pitch" Trembley said. Trembley, the bullpen coach before Perlozzo was dismissed, said he opposed moving Olson to the bullpen to keep him with the Orioles.
Trembley said it is unknown when Freddie Bynum or Melvin Mora will return from the DL. Bynum strained his left hamstring July 6 running to first base. Mora went on the DL, retroactive to Friday, with a sprained foot.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press