Baltimore Orioles Manager Ray Miller said today there is no "rift" between him and General Manager Frank Wren, despite a pointed exchange of words between them in newspaper stories over the weekend in Detroit, when Miller criticized the Orioles' "dysfunctional" roster, and Wren defended the team's progress since last season.

"There's no big rift. Frank and I meet before and after every game," Miller said. ". . . I think he's going to do a heck of a job here. He's got the minor leagues in the best shape they've ever been, with a direction."

After two straight one-run losses to the Tigers this weekend, in which the Orioles played with a three-man bench and three injured pitchers, Miller suggested the team had not made significant progress since last season in improving areas such as team speed and bench.

But today, Miller explained he "got mad" when a Detroit writer asked him a question about strategy after the second loss.

Wren echoed Miller's sentiments, saying tonight: "My relationship with Ray has been fine all year. We meet on a daily basis and discuss every move. We went through a tough time last week with players injured to varying degrees and that made it tough to make all the moves we wanted to make."

Ripken to Be Activated

Miller said third baseman Cal Ripken will be activated from the disabled list on Wednesday, which is the first day rosters may expand. Ripken has been out since Aug. 1 with a second bout of nerve irritation in his back.

"I don't know if he'll play or not [Wednesday]. We'll put him on and see how he is," Miller said. "He felt pretty good coming off [Monday], but he said he wanted to get one more day. I'll leave it up to him. Whenever he feels ready to go, we'll pop him in there."

Right-handed pitcher Mike Fetters, who has been out since undergoing elbow surgery in June, also will be activated. . . .

Orioles ace Mike Mussina, who will miss a second straight start on Wednesday, is penciled into the starting rotation for Saturday against the Indians. . . .

The Orioles received left-handed pitcher Jimmy Hamilton from the Cleveland Indians today to complete Friday's trade that sent Harold Baines to the Indians. Hamilton, 24, was 1-2 with a 5.18 earned run average for Class AAA Buffalo.