Cabrera hopes to give the Orioles a chance to close out a three-game sweep of the Seattle Mariners at Camden Yards.
The Orioles have gotten significant pitching contributions from Erik Bedard, Rodrigo Lopez and Bruce Chen, but Cabrera has yet to show the kind of consistency Baltimore is looking for from its young pitchers.
The 23-year-old Cabrera has given up 12 earned runs in 9 2-3 innings over his last two starts to raise his ERA from 4.50 to 5.91. Cabrera has been dominant at times and ineffective at others, allowing four runs or more in five of his eight starts.
Baltimore hopes Cabrera can break out of his funk, much like Lopez did on Wednesday.
Lopez pitched eight innings of five-hit ball to end a run of seven starts without a win, and Rafael Palmeiro homered to lead the Orioles over the Mariners 3-1 Wednesday.
Baltimore second baseman Brian Roberts missed his first game of the year with a bruised knee. The Orioles were also without catcher Javy Lopez, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a broken bone in his right hand.
Roberts, who’s hitting a team-leading .378, could miss Thursday’s game as well.
Lopez is expected to miss at least six weeks. He will have a metal plate and screws inserted into his hand by Dr. Mark Deitch during surgery Thursday.
“It’s going to be at least six weeks before I start doing some activities,” said Lopez, who was hitting .278 with seven homers and 22 RBIs.
Wednesday’s loss dropped Seattle to 0-2 after two games of their six game road trip.
Raul Ibanez went 2-for-3 to account for two of the Mariners five hits.
Ichiro Suzuki went 0-for-4 to drop his batting average to .326. Suzuki, who had three hits in the series opener Tuesday, leads Seattle with 32 runs scored and 15 stolen bases. He’s batting .424 in 85 career at bats at Camden Yards.