Notes: Bedard still finding his groove

Notes: Bedard still finding his groove

CLEVELAND -- Erik Bedard has made six starts without hitting his stride, but nobody in the Orioles' clubhouse seems particularly concerned. The southpaw has allowed four earned runs or more four times this season, and he's also allowed six home runs in six starts. Still, the components are there for future success.

Bedard struck out 11 batters in a no-decision against Cleveland on Saturday night and leads the league with 42 Ks in 34 innings. Bedard's walked only 13 batters over that span, but he's been more hittable than he was at most points last season. Bedard won 15 games in 2006, but at one point, he went more than a month between wins.

"I think he's been good every time out, but sometimes circumstance doesn't go the way you'd want," said pitching coach Leo Mazzone. "Like last night -- that home run was a little popup. I had no idea that was going out."

"I don't look at Erik as having big problems," added Baltimore manager Sam Perlozzo. "He's inches away sometimes. It would be different if he was all over the place or they were really whacking him around all the time. He's been walking a few guys and he gets himself in trouble there. That's what might be the difference."

Baltimore won four of Bedard's first six starts, which helps mask some of the uglier numbers. He's pitched less than five innings twice -- against playoff contenders Minnesota and Oakland -- and has had only one dominant start. Perlozzo said that there isn't any one factor separating the Bedard of this year from last year's version.

"I think it's a combination of several things," Perlozzo said. "Last year, when he was really pitching well, he had command of the outside fastball. He was deadly with it. And then he used his changeup a lot more. And of course his breaking ball -- if he has them both working in the game and he has command of his fastball, that's when he's really tough to hit. If he can command his fastball and have one of those other two pitches working that day, he should be OK."

Appeal process: The Indians filed an official protest Sunday regarding the strange events in Saturday's game. Baltimore scored a run on a rare double play sacrifice fly, but the umpires initially waved the run off and added it three innings later. The Indians lodged a protest on the field, but also had to file paperwork with the Commissioner's office.

Now, the appeal will be heard by Bob DuPuy -- Major League Baseball's president and chief operating officer -- or somebody he designates for that purpose. The entire process should take place within the next five days, according to league rules. If DuPuy rules in favor of Cleveland, the game could be replayed at a later date.

"I have not seen the play before, myself, and I've been in the game a long time," Perlozzo said. "What the rulebook states is it is a run, so you should have a run. We asked them early on, and they told us that they were working on it. So we gave them a little time to work on it. Finally, they got it right and I think that's the main thing."

Protests happen a couple of times per year in baseball, but it's extraordinarily rare to have the result of a game overturned. Perhaps the most famous occurrence came in 1985 -- the so-called "Pine Tar Incident" -- when Kansas City's George Brett hit a home run with a bat that had more pine tar on it than league specifications allowed.

In that case, the umpires inspected the bat, disallowed the home run and ejected Brett from the game. Kansas City lost that game, protested, and had their objection sustained. The game was replayed from the point of Brett's home run -- and this time, it counted -- and the Royals wound up earning a 5-4 win.

Making a move: The Orioles activated Jaret Wright from the disabled list on Sunday and optioned Jim Johnson to Triple-A Norfolk. Wright had been dealing with a sore shoulder, an ailment he'll have to some degree for the rest of his career. The veteran has had two prior operations on his shoulder, but is normally able to pitch with the condition.

"We need him, and that's one of the reasons we got him over the winter," Perlozzo said of Wright. "We thought he was one of our veteran starters to sort of carry the load for us, and we certainly hope he's going to be OK today, and get through this thing in pretty good fashion."

On your left: Corey Patterson had a key hit against a left-handed reliever -- Cleveland's Aaron Fultz -- both Friday and Saturday night. That's key because Patterson hasn't always hit lefties well, and Perlozzo usually considers sitting him on the bench whenever the Orioles face a tough southpaw starter.

"It has to be big for him, considering he hasn't really done well historically against left-handed pitching," Perlozzo said. "And they weren't bloop hits, they were big hits. That should goose his confidence a little bit there."

Quotable: "I don't see how it changes the game myself. They still added on the runs. They had the lead. I don't see where it would change the game." -- Perlozzo, on Cleveland's protest

Coming up: The Orioles will start a three-game series at Detroit's Comerica Park on Monday. Daniel Cabrera will get the ball in the series opener at 7:05 p.m. ET. He'll be matched against Tigers ace Jeremy Bonderman.

Spencer Fordin is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.