Baltimore Orioles outfielder Luis Matos, who fractured his right ring finger on May 10 against the Minnesota Twins, will begin a rehabilitation assignment Monday. The Orioles hope to get Matos 20 to 25 at-bats in the minors before calling him up next weekend against the Colorado Rockies.

"I don't feel any pain at all," Matos said. "It's just a little bit numb. I'm trying to get ready with my swing."

Since Matos has yet to regain the strength in his right arm, he'll likely serve as designated hitter in his first couple of games in the minors. Matos said he doesn't think he'll have any problems bunting, which is how he fractured the finger.

"I'm not scared of bunting," Matos said.

Bigbie Nearing Return

Manager Lee Mazzilli said outfielder Larry Bigbie (strained left hamstring) will likely be activated Monday. Bigbie, who was placed on the DL on May 28, has been on a rehabilitation assignment with Class AAA Ottawa.

Mazzilli thinks catcher Javy Lopez, who fractured bones in his right hand on May 24, could return in a month. Lopez is scheduled to begin strengthening his right hand next week.

Pitcher Erik Bedard is scheduled to meet with team doctors, perhaps Monday. Bedard, on the disabled list with a sprained left knee, could start a rehabilitation assignment soon. . . .

Newly acquired utility man Eli Marrero will make his debut Saturday against left-handed Cincinnati Reds pitcher Brandon Claussen. Marrero, acquired in trade on Wednesday, joined the team on Friday.

"I knew I was coming to a first-place team," Marrero said. "A lot of my friends in baseball gave me a call, told me they're jealous." . . .

Class A Frederick's Mario Delgado, Nick Markakis and Nate Spears were named to the June 28 Carolina League all-star game. Class A Delmarva's David Haehnel and Matt Houston were named to the South Atlantic League all-star game, also June 28.