Wigginton ruling forces lineup shuffle

Wigginton ruling forces lineup shuffle

TORONTO -- Minutes before Monday night's contest against the Blue Jays in Toronto, Orioles interim manager Juan Samuel sat in the dugout with two lineups in his hand: The original, and a contingency lineup.

Saumuel was waiting on a phone call from Major League Baseball's Commissioner's office to discuss the details of first baseman Ty Wiggington's pending suspension.

Wiggington, who was issued a three-game suspension for arguing a missed call by first-base umpire Jim Darling in Thursday night's 5-0 loss to the Twins, formally appealed the suspension shortly after it was issued, therefore postponing its effects.

Following batting practice, Wiggington and Samuel were informed that the league was willing to reduce the first baseman's suspension from three games to two, if he would serve the suspension immediately.

"To be totally honest with you, I just know I got a phone call saying it was going to be reduced to two games and if I was willing to do it," Wiggington said about the process. "I said 'yes'.

"I didn't really know [how the agreement came to fruition]. I'm just trying to put the whole thing behind me. The sooner I can get back on the field the better."

With Wiggington out of the lineup for Monday and Tuesday's games against the Blue Jays, Jake Fox -- the Oriole's only backup catcher -- will assume duties at first base, leaving only two position players on the bench -- outfielder Corey Patterson and infielder Julio Lugo.

It was a situation Samuel did not want to face, especially with his club currently carrying a 13-man pitching staff.

"We will have to play Fox at first base and be short a couple of guys," Samuel said. "Hopefully nothing happens, but that's the way it's going to be."

Wiggington, the subject of several trade rumors as of late, was hitting .249 with 16 home runs and 49 RBIs prior to Monday's two-game suspension.