SARASOTA, Fla. -- Brian Roberts took another step forward in his progression on Tuesday afternoon, taking pregame batting practice and participating in infield drills with the team prior to the 1:05 p.m. ET matchup against the Rays.
Though it's a small step on paper, the fact that Roberts was around his teammates and enjoying the atmosphere -- with loud music blaring in the stadium -- is notable for the second baseman, who avoided January's FanFest at his doctors' advice because of the noise and crowds.
"It's good to see him with the team. I know it means a lot to him," manager Buck Showalter said of Roberts, who has been taking batting practice (off the coaches) and doing infield work on the back fields.
"It has been a progression, so I'm not going to say it means anything, but it's another step for him," Showalter added. "You see his face, you can imagine how excited he is to be out there in this environment."
Roberts, who has been sidelined since May with a concussion, has maintained throughout his recovery that there is no timetable for his return. He is taking every day as prescribed, and there wasn't any difference in that stance following Tuesday's activities.
Phillips making his case for a trip north
SARASOTA, Fla. -- Zach Phillips has allowed one run -- a solo homer -- over his first five spring innings, and the lefty, who has twice been used in specific early-game situations, is trying to make an impression that will force the team to bring him north.
It's no secret that the Orioles have some roster constraints, with a Major League-leading 10 players in camp who are out of options, making the road that much harder for a bullpen hopeful such as Phillips, who has an option remaining.
"[I'm] not going to hold that against a guy, that he's got an option," manager Buck Showalter said of Phillips' chances. "That's me personally. It might be the tiebreaker. But [Phillips is] at the point now where he's trying to stay away from it being a tiebreaker."
The 25-year-old Phillips was acquired in a mid-July trade with Texas in exchange for infielder Nick Green and cash, and he has purposely kept himself uaware of which players are out of options.
"I can't be worried about that," Phillips said. "I have to go out there and pitch whenever they call me to."
Phillips made his Major League debut with the Orioles in August and recorded a 1.13 ERA in eight innings over 10 games. Showalter has said from the get-go that he likes Phillips' presentation, a deceptive delivery that allows the ball to appear to come out quicker.
"If you aren't getting what Zach Phillips is doing, you are not watching," Showalter said. "This kid is not scared. Throw the velocity thing out. He's got a fast arm. He throws at a higher velocity than the gun shows [and has] got a great hand.
"There's a lot of things I like about him. He's got great presentation. He's going to make it hard on us."
A CT scan was performed on Taylor Teagarden's back on Tuesday, and manager Buck Showalter confirmed that the backup catcher will "be out for a while." Teagarden visited a specialist on Tuesday to discuss treatment options after having an MRI performed on the area on Monday. Showalter said earlier on Tuesday that surgery wasn't being discussed, and the team hopes to have a clearer picture of Teagarden's timeline in the next few days.
Darren O'Day is still sidelined with a groin issue, but Showalter feels as though it might have been caught early enough to avoid becoming anything serious.
Nolan Reimold was back in the lineup on Tuesday for the first time since taking a pitch from Rays righty Alex Cobb on the left cheek on Friday. Reimold had one of his molars fixed on Monday and also worked out with no problems. He chose to not wear a protective shield and singled in his first at-bat.
Matt Lindstrom will play on Wednesday for the first time since he began dealing with some back spasms. Nick Markakis is slated to make his Grapefruit League debut in that game as designated hitter. Markakis will play his first game in right field on March 20.
Reliever Willie Eyre left the team before batting practice on Tuesday to tend to his three-year-old daughter, Lily, whom his wife found in their pool. Lily was taken to a local hospital, X-rays came back negative and she is recovering well.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.