By MARC TOPKIN, Times Staff Writer
Published September 25, 2005
ANAHEIM, Calif. - Rookie reliever Chad Orvella may not pitch again this season due to inflammation and an impingement in his right shoulder.
Orvella and manager Lou Piniella both said the injury is not serious and there is no concern of lingering effects or a need for surgery. Orvella was examined by Rays orthopedic physician Koco Eaton last week and on Friday by Angels team doctor Lewis Yocum.
"I've had two doctors look at it and both say I'm fine," Orvella said. "It's just getting to that point of the year. Pitching in September is something I've never done before. I've thrown about 20 more innings than I ever have before and made twice as many appearances. And it's only my second (full season) pitching.
"It's just wearing down and getting tired."
Orvella, promoted May 30 from Double-A Montgomery, has emerged as a key setup man for the Rays, going 3-3 with a 3.60 ERA in 50 innings over 37 games. With the Biscuits, he pitched 25 innings and had a 0.36 ERA.
Orvella first felt the discomfort - "just a little pinch" in the Sept.16 game in Baltimore and has not pitched since.
"I think we're just probably going to shut him down for the year," Piniella said. "He hasn't gotten better. I don't think he'll pitch here in this series and if he can't pitch in the Cleveland series we'll just shut him down."
Orvella said he would like to get back on the mound at least one more time "so in my mind I know I'm all right."
SORRY SETH: Seth McClung summoned reporters Saturday to read a hand-written statement apologizing for his post-game remarks Tuesday when he said he was "lost" and needed "help" on the mound and questioned whether he was getting too much information or not enough.
"The other day after I pitched against Boston I made comments that truly didn't represent my opinions and feelings with the instruction that I've been getting as a pitcher on this ballclub," McClung said. "My intent was to criticize myself and (express) my frustration with my inability to get the job done of late. I spoke out of frustration and emotion after a hard loss. I, in no way, meant to criticize my instruction as a pitcher. I would like to apologize to my manager and pitching coach ( Chuck Hernandez) for my comments. Both of them are huge reasons I put on a major-league uniform today and for that I'm grateful."
Piniella said he had "a little talk" with McClung to let him know there were a lot of people trying to help him and to caution him to be careful what he says to the media.
"It's a good learning experience for him," Piniella said.
Going into his last start of the season on Wednesday at Cleveland, McClung, who missed the first half of last season recovering from Tommy John elbow surgery, sounds tired.
"I'm just hoping to muster everything I can for six, seven, eight innings next time and then rest," he said. "So maybe that answers your question."
COOL CASEY: Rookie Casey Kotchman, the Seminole High product, has been a valuable addition for the Angels, and not just for how he's beaten up the Rays, including his two-run pinch-hit single that scored the winning runs Friday.
"Casey doesn't panic at the plate," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said after the game. "He does a good job of putting the ball into play. I think Casey's really advanced as far as his experience might make you think. He studies the game and has a good idea of what he needs to do."
MISCELLANY: Friday was the fourth game in Rays history when their pitchers did not strike out a batter. It happened on July 20, 2000, at Toronto; Aug. 15, 2002, against Cleveland; and April 9, 2004, against Baltimore. ... Scott Kazmir and Carl Crawford both said relatives in Houston got through Hurricane Rita with no major problems. ... Todd Kalas will work today's telecast in place of analyst Joe Magrane, who stayed home due to family matters. ... Mark Hendrickson looks to win a career-high 11th game today and extend his winning streak to a franchise-record seven straight.