BALTIMORE -- Top pitching prospect Kevin Gausman, who is expected to be one of the Orioles' September callups, could join the big league club earlier than that.
Manager Buck Showalter hinted at such a scenario prior to Saturday's game, with Gausman -- who would likely work out of the bullpen -- perhaps joining Baltimore prior to his next start for Triple-A Norfolk, scheduled for Monday night. The Orioles start a three-city road trip on Tuesday that opens in Boston, with stops in New York and Cleveland, and one possibility -- given Monday's off-day -- would be to send out a current starter and have the potential to get him back without missing a start.
Showalter met earlier this week with executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette to discuss September's roster expansion, with the callups expected to come in waves. In addition to Gausman, Norfolk starters Josh Stinson, Tsuyoshi Wada and Zach Britton are solid candidates to come up and add long relief help -- along with reliever Mark Hendrickson -- with outfielders Chris Dickerson and Jason Pridie also strong considerations.
Infielder Jonathan Schoop, the team's fifth-ranked prospect, is a possibility, but he's not a lock, nor is designated hitter Henry Urrutia. The Orioles, like last year, will only call up players they think can help the big league club's postseason chances, not just to take a look at some of their younger players. They will also have emergency candidates working out at an instructional league of sorts at their Spring Training facility in Sarasota, Fla.
"I know, initially, a pretty good idea about what we might do," Showalter said of the first day of expansion on Sept. 1. "Which of the left-handers do you want to get on the roster? Are you going to protect them in the offseason anyway? You are not going to risk losing him if you put him on. There's a lot of dynamics there. Schoop is going to the [Arizona] Fall League, do you leave him alone? There's a lot of moving parts here.
"I'll be glad when all the dust is settled, they are here and that's what we are doing. But there will also be some guys down in instructional league we can go down and get."
O's line up Gonzalez to start Friday in New York
BALTIMORE -- The Orioles have Miguel Gonzalez lined up to start Friday's game in New York, as they try to play the matchups when possible down the stretch.
Gonzalez, who will be available out of the bullpen over the weekend, is 2-1 with a 2.45 ERA in four career starts at Yankee Stadium and last pitched on Tuesday against the Rays. The right-hander has also pitched much better over his career on extra rest, going 4-3 with a 2.62 ERA in 11 starts on six or more days rest, compared to a 4.66 ERA on four days.
"With the off-days, it's like having a six-man [rotation]," manager Buck Showalter said of his ability to maneuver around the starters given five off-days in August, the final one coming on Monday.
"We've certainly taken a look at it all the way through, if you notice there are people that fall where they've had a pretty good track record competing in that ballpark or against that team. We can't make them all fall perfectly. So, we'll see."
Following Sunday's series finale, which Scott Feldman will start, the Orioles' rotation is listed as Wei-Yin Chen, Bud Norris and Saturday's starter Chris Tillman for a three-game set in Boston starting on Tuesday.
• Jason Hammel, on the disabled list with right flexor tightness, will throw off the mound for a second time on Sunday, and is slated to throw for Double-A Bowie in a rehab game that will most likely be on Thursday. Hammel will throw 45-50 pitches in that game, and he could need just one more rehab game after that, particularly if the team brings him back as a bullpen option. That scenario is looking like it will probably happen and it will give the Orioles Hammel back much quicker if it does.
• Wilson Betemit's rehab assignment ends on Monday, and the team could try to extend him, but would need his permission to do so. Betemit, who hasn't played this season due to a right knee injury, recently moved up to Triple-A Norfolk.
• Orioles closer Jim Johnson, who became the first Baltimore pitcher to post two straight 40-save seasons in Friday's win, is the 21st pitcher in baseball to accomplish 40 saves in consecutive seasons.
• Feldman, who has been in the bullpen the past few days in the event of an emergency, will pitch Sunday's series finale against Oakland.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.