Extra Bases

Orioles prospect thrilled to face Beckett

FORT MYERS, Fla. — The Orioles started Manny Machado, the third overall pick of the 2010 draft, in the split-squad game at JetBlue Park. A Miami native, Machado rooted for the Marlins as an 11-year-old in 2003 when Josh Beckett led them to the World Series.

“I’m pretty excited for that,” the 19-year-old Machado said before the game. “I have seen him since I was a little kid.”

“That means I’m getting old,” Beckett said with a smile when he found out.

Machado faced Beckett once and grounded to shortstop.

“I guess he wasn’t a Josh Beckett fan because he sure was taking some
hard swings,” Beckett said.

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Machado later walked twice. After the game, he was pleased with his first start of the spring for the major league team.

“Great experience, I felt good out there and I thought I had some good quality at-bats. It was a good game overall,” he said. “[Beckett] is a hell of a pitcher. He’s got good stuff. Hopefully, I will be seeing him soon.”

Also in the Fort:

• Lars Anderson, 9 for 21 this spring, had a two-run double and Cody Ross a solo homer in the 7-4 victory.

• The Red Sox rented out the Bass Pro Shop in Fort Myers for a team outing after today’s game against the Rays in Port Charlotte. There will be a team dinner followed by competition in such events as crossbow shooting, fishing, air rifle and kayak racing.

• Daniel Bard and Alfredo Aceves have been split up in the rotation. Aceves will start a minor league game on Monday and Bard will start on Tuesday against the Blue Jays.

• Righthander Carlos Silva, who didn’t get beyond a few bullpen sessions before experiencing shoulder pain, was released. He was in camp on a minor league contract.

• Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Jose Iglesias did not play in either game. They stayed in Fort Myers to rest injuries and get some at-bats in minor league games. Saltalamacchia was 2 for 5 with a double and a walk for Single-A Salem and Greenville. Iglesias was 1 for 5 for Greenville.

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Saltalamacchia, who has bursitis in his left hip, is tentatively scheduled to start against the Rays in Port Charlotte on Sunday.

“I haven’t seen bursitis in a long time. I think my Mom had it the last time I heard about it,” Valentine said.

Said Saltalamacchia: “I could have been playing. But it was better to take care of it now. I’m fine.”

Iglesias hasn’t played since March 10 because of a groin strain and will sit at least another day.

Carl Crawford (left wrist) took 15 more swings at balls on a tee. The final five cuts were “aggressive,” according to Valentine.

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