Moving Wieters to Triple-A not yet an option

Moving Wieters to Triple-A not yet an option

SAN DIEGO -- Interim manager Juan Samuel said there has been no discussion within the organization to sending struggling catcher Matt Wieters to Triple-A.

The 24-year-old Wieters entered Sunday's finale with the Padres in an 0-for-16 stretch, and he had recorded just three hits in his past 10 games, posting a .088 average (3-for-34) over that span.

Slotted in the seven-hole, Wieters broke out of his funk in a big way by clearing the bases with a first-inning double, staking the O's to a four-run lead.

"We haven't even thought about it," Baltimore's skipper said. "[The coaching staff] just leaves that to the people that make the decision, when they feel it is the time to do something. But it has not been discussed at all."

Wieters was back behind the plate on Sunday, partly because Samuel wanted to see him take some swings off right-handed starter Jon Garland. A switch-hitter, Wieters is batting .230 (35-for-152) off right-handed pitching and .203 (14-for-69) off lefties.

"He's been trying to stay on top of the ball," Samuel said. "I don't know if he is trying too hard, again we have faced some lefties too. I think I [will] see how he looks from the left side, and then go from there."

A highly-touted prospect, Wieters led all American League rookies with a .288 average last season and was expected to build on a red-hot September. Instead, he has struggled to hit for average and his lack of power has been alarming. Through the Orioles' first 68 games, Wieters tallied five homers and 18 RBIs and has consistently looked overmatched at the plate -- striking out 52 times in 221 at-bats, which trails only Adam Jones' 60 for the team lead.

"I think when his mechanics are right, his bat speed is going to be there," said Samuel, who has made a conscious effort to give Wieters more rest in hopes that keeping his legs fresh will spark a hot streak.

"It's a day-to-day, series-to-series [decision] and we will see where he is, what decision is going to be made. But to me, he's a guy you got to play."