MRI on Wieters' elbow comes back clean

Catcher feeling better according to Showalter

MRI on Wieters' elbow comes back clean

SARASOTA, Fla. -- The Orioles changed course and had Matt Wieters undergo an MRI on his right elbow on Monday morning, but the results were encouraging for the club.

According to manager Buck Showalter, Dr. Leigh Ann Curl said the test showed that Wieters' elbow "looked good structurally." Now it's just a matter of getting rid of the remaining soreness.

"Pretty positive," Showalter said. "I know Matt felt good about it today."

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Wieters left Saturday's game against the Twins after the top of the first inning, when he felt discomfort on a throw to second. While the Orioles took X-rays, which were negative, they initially decided to hold off on the MRI. However, team orthopedist Dr. Michael Jacobs arrived on Monday and decided to have the test done.

"He's lost some of the soreness," Showalter said of Wieters before the results were available. "The swelling's gone for the most part. It's gotten better every day."

Executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette told MLB.com's Richard Justice that "No one is talking surgery" in regard to Wieters, but that the catcher will need some rest. Asked if Wieters will be ready for Opening Day, Duquette said he wasn't sure yet.

"I think we need to get a little more information," Duquette said. "He's going to be down for a little while."

Wieters, who returned from Tommy John surgery on the elbow last June, has played in six games this spring.

Worth noting

• Left-hander T.J. McFarland, who has been dealing with left elbow soreness, came out of Sunday's side session "real good," according to Showalter. The Orioles plan to get him in a game either Tuesday or Wednesday, for his first appearance since March 6.

• Baltimore made its first round of cuts on Sunday, then added more before Monday's game. Right-hander Hunter Harvey, the organization's top prospect according to MLBPipeline.com, was reassigned to Minor League camp. Lefty Chris Jones and outfielder Henry Urrutia were optioned to Triple-A Norfolk, while righty Jason Garcia was optioned to Double-A Bowie.

Garcia will work as a starter at Bowie this season, Showalter said. He made 21 relief appearances for Baltimore last season, posting a 4.25 ERA.

Showalter expects the cuts to continue, since games officially begin on the Minor League side on Wednesday.

"The innings are going away now, and they need to get stretched out and get ready to start the season," Showalter said. "A lot of these guys we're sending out, we don't have the innings for them."

Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.