Showalter watching Connaughton with O's in mind

Showalter watching Connaughton with O's in mind

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter knows who he isn't rooting for during the NCAA men's basketball tournament: Notre Dame.

"I want to see [Orioles prospect Pat Connaughton] get eliminated as soon as possible," Showalter said with a grin. "I'm just being frank. Not in a bad way.

"That's how I feel, looking at everything from the Orioles angle."

Once Notre Dame's season is over, Connaughton can switch to focusing on baseball and start his Minor League season sooner.

Connaughton, a senior who helped the Irish advance to the Sweet Sixteen, was the O's fourth-round pick in last year's Draft. The right-handed pitcher made his pro baseball debut last summer.

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.