Orioles closer Jim Johnson fans two in “B” game

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The Orioles can remove right-handed reliever Jim Johnson from their list of injured players.

According to Roch Kubatko of MASN.com, the 28-year-old closer struck out two batters Saturday during a one-inning appearance in a “B” game.

It was his first live action of the spring.

Johnson is about a week behind the other pitchers in O’ss camp due to back tightness that he began experiencing in late February. But relievers only require a handful of exhibition appearances in order to get sufficiently geared up for the start of the regular season and there’s still plenty of time for him to get his work in between now and Opening Day.

Johnson posted a 2.67 ERA, 1.11 WHIP and 58/21 K/BB ratio in 91 innings of relief last season.

Angels hire Brad Ausmus as special assistant to the GM

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Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports that the Angels have hired former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus as a special assistant to GM Billy Eppler.

Ausmus, 48, managed the Tigers for four seasons, accruing a 314-332 (.486) record. The Tigers fired him after the 2017 season and hired former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire in his place.

Ausmus will assist with scouting and evaluations of players in the Angels’ system, amateurs, and players in other organizations.