After Friday's 3-1 exhibition victory against the
But Orioles manager
"Tilly's stuff has been good. He's had some problems in the past with not (doing) what he is capable of early in a ballgame. That hasn't happened down here," Showalter said. "I've been really impressed with his stuff. He's been very crisp with his stuff from the first pitch."
Tillman has been using a new leg kick this spring and is trying to get the ball to the plate more quickly this season with runners on base. At times, he said, he is rushing his pitches and missing his location. He threw 28 of his 51 pitches for strikes Friday.
"I know exactly what I need to do," Tillman said. "I just need to slow myself down and try not to be so quick."
After three scoreless innings, he was chased in the fourth after giving up consecutive singles to Chris Parmalee and
Overall, Tillman, who was 3-5 with a 5.52 ERA in 13 starts last year, has been pleased with his results this spring.
"It's going well. I think I've made some adjustments, some mechanical adjustments," Tillman said. "It's helping me already. I'm excited about it. I'm able to make the adjustments quicker and see exactly what I'm doing wrong and go from there."
And though he is still considered by observers to be a long shot to make the Opening Day rotation, the man he needs to impress the most says he is not dismissing Tillman yet.
"He doesn't get missed in the shuffle with me. Tilly's a guy with a big upside," Showalter said. "I feel good about where he is. His arm is a lot further along than it was last year at this time."
Andino hits first homer
The Orioles moved their spring record to 5-6 by beating the Twins (7-8) on Friday.
The Orioles scored two more runs in the eighth to take the lead on a Scott Beerer single and a Twins' error.
Lefty Dana Eveland, who was acquired from the
"It seems like he is a little more at ease," Showalter said of Eveland. "A lot of pitchers, when they are new to organizations, get some anxiety out there the first time out, couple times out. I think we saw a little more relaxed guy doing what he is capable of doing."
The Orioles continue to nurse many of their key players back to health.
Zach Britton (shoulder) and
Jim Johnson (back) and
Miguel Socolovich, who strained his groin in Thursday's game and had to leave in mid-inning, said he still felt some discomfort Friday, but is considered day-to-day. He's not sure when he'll pitch again in a game.
Johnson dealing with "soreness"
First baseman Nick Johnson was originally expected to make the trip to Fort Myers, but did not make it due to "general soreness," according to Showalter.
The 33-year-old, who has an extensive injury history, has played in seven exhibition games this season. And Showalter said there was no reason to push him Friday. But he is expected to play again Saturday.
"He has been taking a lot of reps on purpose," Showalter said. "Part of his evaluation is if he can stand up to the grind, physically."
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