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Orioles Notebook

Mora Says He'll Play in Opener

By Jorge Arangure Jr.
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, April 4, 2005; Page D10

PHILADELPHIA, April 3 -- Melvin Mora returned to the Baltimore Orioles' lineup Sunday for an exhibition game against the Philadelphia Phillies and does not expect to miss Opening Day because of his sore right wrist.

Mora was struck in the wrist on Wednesday by St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jeff Suppan. He did not travel to exhibition games in Oklahoma City, instead flying to Baltimore for an MRI exam, which showed no damage.

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"I can swing," said Mora, who singled to center Sunday in his first at-bat. "It doesn't bother me to swing."

For Williams, It's a Relief

Reliever Todd Williams said he had no idea he had made the team until reporters approached him on Sunday. Williams was fighting over one of the last bullpen spots. Pitcher Jay Witasick was assigned to the team's minor league camp, opening a spot for Williams.

"As far as any uncertainty, there really wasn't any," Williams said. "I never come into spring thinking I have a job anyway. I came in this spring with the team that I finished up with, that I had pretty good success with, feeling if I did the same things I did during the season last year I felt I'd be okay."

Williams solidified his spot in the bullpen with 10 scoreless innings this spring. Last season, Williams, after being signed as a minor league free agent, had a 2.87 ERA in 31 1/3 innings. . . .

Baltimore Manager Lee Mazzilli said Rafael Palmeiro likely would be the Opening Day starter at first base. Jay Gibbons would be the designated hitter. . . . Larry Bigbie hit his team-high fourth home run of the spring in the fourth inning.

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