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Future Takes the Field Tuesday

Though the Orioles first official game of spring training isn't until Wednesday afternoon against the Mets, many of the team's young prospects will get their first game action on Tuesday.

The Orioles will host Team Italy at Fort Lauderdale Stadium in an exhibition tomorrow and while the team's roster will be short on major leaguers, it may still be of plenty of interest to the fans.

Baltimore's top draft pick from 2008, Brian Matusz, will get the start with Matt Wieters likely serving as his battery mate. In addition, pitchers Jake Arrieta, Brad Bergesen, David Hernandez, Jim Hoey, Troy Patton, Wilfrido Perez and Chris Tillman are expected to get some work.

As far as positional players, Dave Trembley says in this MLB.com piece that fans should expect to see Brandon Snyder (1B/3B), Justin Turner (2B), Donnie Murphy (IF), Justin Christian (OF), Nolan Reimold (OF), Lou Montanez (OF) and Scott Moore (3B).

Matusz, who has not had the chance to play a full season of professional ball since being drafted last summer out of San Diego, will be starting for the first time in front of the organization's top brass.

The game, which came about via an understanding between Trembley and Italian manager Marco Mazzieri, serves the Orioles well as it gives the team a chance to get an early read on several young players that are already ear-marked for the minors this season.

"I knew I was going to get into the game at some point in time, but to be able to start is pretty special. ... I'm definitely excited by it," Matusz told reporters.

The Baltimore Sun's Jeff Zrebiec has Trembley's pitching schedule (scroll halfway down) for the team's upcoming exhibition games this week which features Brad Hennessey, Danys Baez, Koji Uehara and Jeremy Guthrie as the Orioles' starters.

By CJ Holley  |  February 23, 2009; 10:06 AM ET
Categories:  Orioles  
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