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Orioles Notebook

Tejada: Nothing to Smile About

By Jorge Arangure Jr.
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, March 21, 2005; Page D05

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., March 20 -- Miguel Tejada appeared in the Baltimore Orioles' clubhouse Sunday with a swollen cheek and his name in the lineup for the first time since Tuesday. Tejada, who had missed the previous four games after having a molar extracted, appeared to still be in pain.

"I feel better," Tejada said halfheartedly.

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It has been a tough spring for Tejada, who has also battled the flu. He had two at-bats and came out of the game in the sixth inning of the 5-1 loss to the New York Mets.

"His tooth was bothering him today, so that's why I took him out," Manager Lee Mazzilli said. "It was the one that he had pulled the other day -- zaps you a little bit. He said it had been barking during the game."

First baseman Jay Gibbons said he is finally starting to recover from pneumonia. Gibbons took batting practice for the first time on Friday and believes he might be able to play in a game sometime this week. For now, the first objective is to get his energy back. After a five-round batting practice session, Gibbons said he went home and slept for five hours.

"It's going to take a little bit before I get to full strength energy-wise," Gibbons said.

The first baseman said he thought he just had a bad case of the flu until a doctor ordered a chest X-ray, which revealed pneumonia.

"That's what was strange about it," Gibbons said. "I didn't have any signs of being congested."

Six to the Minors

The Orioles optioned pitchers Eddy Rodriguez and Aaron Rakers and reassigned Tony Fiore and Dave Borkowski to the minor league camp. The four had combined to throw just 10 innings. After the game, the team sent down outfielder Nick Markakis and catcher Brandon Marsters. . . . The Orioles have the day off on Monday except for Matt Riley and Eric DuBose, who will each pitch a game at Baltimore's minor league camp in Sarasota, Fla. . . .

Donald Fehr, the players' association executive director, is scheduled to meet with the Orioles on Tuesday. Every year, a representative of the players' union addresses each team. . . .

The Orioles had only six hits against the Mets' split squad.

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