SARASOTA, Fla. – Nick Markakis has been diagnosed with a small herniated disc in his neck, Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. Markakis, who was scratched from a game on Mar. 3 with neck spasms, had an MRI on Monday, and will miss another week.
Showalter said his injury would be expected to keep him out two weeks. Since he’s already missed a week, he should be ready to play around Mar. 20.
“Everything else is structurally fine and some of the things you worry about weren’t present. We have positive hopes that it will resolve itself,” Showalter said.
“We’d like for it to be nothing, just a spasm. When you start talking about that, you’d like to get that type of prognosis.”
The 29-year-old right fielder flew to Baltimore for an examination at Johns Hopkins Hospital with spine specialist Dr. Lee Riley on Tuesday. He is expected back in camp on Wednesday.
Markakis had abdominal surgery in Jan. 2012, a procedure to remove his broken hamate bone in his right hand last June and one on his left thumb after CC Sabathia hit him with a pitch in September.
Markakis last played on Mar. 1, and is hitting .250 (4-for-12).
-Nolan Reimold’s right shoulder is improving, and he should be ready to play in the field in a few days.
-Lew Ford has left camp to deal with a family matter in Texas.
-Showalter expects to take a look at Luis Martinez, a minor league catcher, who has missed time with a strained oblique muscle.
-The Orioles named former major league infielder Nelson Norman as the head of their director of baseball operations for the Dominican Republic.
BALTIMORE -- Mike Clevenger pitched a two-hitter in his first career complete game, and the Cleveland Indians hit three solo homers off Chris Tillman in a 4-0 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday.
Jose Ramirez went 3 for 4 with his team-leading fifth home run. Yan Gomes and Yonder Alonso also went deep for Cleveland, which came into the game ranked second-to-last in the AL in runs and last in batting average.
Clevenger (2-0) hardly needed the offensive support. Pitching on seven days' rest, the right-hander struck out three, walked two and allowed only one runner past first base.
The only two hits he allowed were singles by Manny Machado in the fourth inning and Chance Sisco in the fifth.
It was Clevenger's 35th career start. His previous longest outing was 7 1/3 innings, earlier this month against Kansas City.
While Clevenger is unbeaten in 11 starts since July 31, Tillman has experienced an opposite fate. This was his 22nd straight start without a victory, dating back to his first outing last season.
Tillman (0-4) gave up four runs, eight hits and a walk in six innings. The three home runs were one more than he yielded in his first three starts this season.
Michael Brantley hit a run-scoring groundout in the first inning and Gomes connected in the fourth for a 2-0 lead.
The Orioles put runners on the corners with one out in the fourth, their lone threat against Clevenger, who responded by retiring Tim Beckham on a short fly to left and getting Anthony Santander to ground out.
Ramirez led off the sixth with a drive to left, and Alonso hit a two-out shot that landed on Eutaw Street beyond the right-field scoreboard.
DETROIT - Leonys Martin hit his first big league grand slam, Jeimer Candelario had four hits and three RBIs, and the Detroit Tigers beat Baltimore 13-8 Thursday to extend the Orioles' losing streak to six.
Jordan Zimmermann (1-0) gave up four runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings, allowing two home runs to Manny Machado and one to Chris Davis. Zimmermann was pitching for the first time since being hit in the jaw by a line drove off the bat of Cleveland's Jason Kipnis on April 11.
Alex Cobb (0-2) made his second start after signing a $57 million, four-year contract in spring training and his ERA rose to 15.43. He allowed seven runs - five earned - and 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings.
Machado had four RBIs for the Orioles, who were outhit 18-14 in the game and outscored 23-15 in the three-game sweep.
Victor Martinez hit an RBI single in the first, but Davis put Baltimore ahead with a two-run homer in the second, his sixth hit and fourth homer in 10 career at-bats against Zimmermann.
Detroit went ahead for good with four runs in the bottom half after third baseman Tim Beckham's throwing error allowed James McCann to reach base leading off. Jose Iglesias hit a two-run triple, Miguel Cabrera had an RBI single and Nick Castellanos a run-scoring groundout.
Machado's homer in the third cut Baltimore's deficit to 5-2, but Candelario's two-run homer extended the lead to 7-2 in the bottom half. Martin homered off Mike Wright Jr. in a five-run fifth.