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<b>Pitching projections</b>: Manager <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PESPT00008843" title="Buck Showalter" href="/topic/sports/baseball/buck-showalter-PESPT00008843.topic">Buck Showalter</a> has pushed both <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PESPT0015157" title="Wei-Yin Chen" href="/topic/sports/baseball/wei-yin-chen-PESPT0015157.topic">Wei-Yin Chen</a> (pictured) and <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PESPT0015890" title="Miguel Gonzalez" href="/topic/sports/baseball/miguel-gonzalez-PESPT0015890.topic">Miguel Gonzalez</a> back a couple days in the rotation to get them some extra rest at a time when a more short-sighted manager might want to squeeze every possible regular season start out of them. Showalter wants to make sure they will be fresh and healthy when <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PESPT000010090" title="Jason Hammel" href="/topic/sports/baseball/jason-hammel-PESPT000010090.topic">Jason Hammel</a> rejoins the rotation for the September stretch. It's probably a coincidence that -- if the rotation stays on schedule the rest of the way-- it would push Chen back into the opener of the final regular-season series against the <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="ORSPT000221" title="Tampa Bay Rays" href="/topic/sports/baseball/tampa-bay-rays-ORSPT000221.topic">Tampa Bay Rays</a> instead of making his final start in the second game of the final home series against the <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="ORSPT000005" title="Boston Red Sox" href="/topic/sports/baseball/boston-red-sox-ORSPT000005.topic">Red Sox</a>, especially since the <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="ORSPT000160" title="Baltimore Orioles" href="/topic/sports/baseball/baltimore-orioles-ORSPT000160.topic">O's</a> are 3-0 in Chen's games against Boston and only 1-2 in his starts against the Rays. Obviously, it's almost impossible to project the rotation six weeks out, and Showalter almost certainly has some more tricks up his sleeve.

( MCT photo / August 19, 2012 )

Pitching projections: Manager Buck Showalter has pushed both Wei-Yin Chen (pictured) and Miguel Gonzalez back a couple days in the rotation to get them some extra rest at a time when a more short-sighted manager might want to squeeze every possible regular season start out of them. Showalter wants to make sure they will be fresh and healthy when Jason Hammel rejoins the rotation for the September stretch. It's probably a coincidence that -- if the rotation stays on schedule the rest of the way-- it would push Chen back into the opener of the final regular-season series against the Tampa Bay Rays instead of making his final start in the second game of the final home series against the Red Sox, especially since the O's are 3-0 in Chen's games against Boston and only 1-2 in his starts against the Rays. Obviously, it's almost impossible to project the rotation six weeks out, and Showalter almost certainly has some more tricks up his sleeve.

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