Hammel's next step could be simulated game

Hammel's next step could be simulated game

ARLINGTON -- Jason Hammel took another positive step Tuesday, throwing 41 pitches in the bullpen and taking ground balls before the Orioles' game against Texas.

Hammel, the Orioles' best starting pitcher before injuring his right knee on July 13, could throw two or three innings in a simulated game in Baltimore on Friday, if he comes out of Tuesday's work OK.

"We'll have to wait and see how he feels tomorrow," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "He was pretty gassed. He got after it pretty good today."

Hammel fielded bunts and covered first on "tweener" ground balls between first and second, Showalter said. Hammel was 8-6 with a 3.54 ERA before getting injured against Detroit.