TORONTO -- The Orioles received some good news on Tuesday, as an MRI on right-hander Chris Tillman's elbow came back negative.
Team orthopedist Dr. John Wilckens saw the same thing that the MRI showed, which was just some inflammation in the elbow.
"All structure is good, ligament, everything," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "The nerve is a little inflamed, but that's normal at this time of the year."
The plan is for Tillman to go to Bowie, where the Orioles' Double-A affiliate resides, and get some exercise
before his next start, which has yet to be determined.
Showalter said Tillman would need four or five days, at least, provided there is no further discomfort in the elbow.
"We're hoping to not give an anti-inflammatory shot, and I think we're going to be able to stay away from that," Showalter said.
Tillman, who experienced stiffness from the beginning of his last outing against the Yankees on Sunday, until he was removed after three innings, is 7-2 with a 3.39 ERA over 11 starts this season.
With the uncertainty of Tillman's status, and Showalter wanting to get rookie Miguel Gonzalez extra rest at some point this month, the Orioles could turn to a six-man rotation. Showalter wouldn't go as far as saying it, but starter Jake Arrieta, who has made 10 starts at Triple-A Norfolk, is likely to join the team soon.
"Fortunately, we have some depth to pick from and some guys that are ready to pitch and that includes Steve Johnson and Jake Arietta," Showalter said.
"He [Arrieta] has pitched real well down there his last three of four starts. He has always had good stuff, he's just commanding the ball better."
Arrieta went 3-9 with a 6.13 ERA with the Orioles over 18 starts before being sent to Norfolk.