Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Chris Tillman missed an intrasquad exhibition Sunday after suffering a “core muscle injury,” per Roch Kubatko of

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Tillman to Undergo MRI If Situation Doesn’t Improve

Monday, Feb. 29

Orioles manager Buck Showalter told reporters he’s unsure of how serious Tillman’s injury is, so he and the team’s medical staff aren’t going to take any chances in spring training.

“Right now, it’s precautionary, but who knows what [will happen]?” he said, per Eduardo A. Encina of the Baltimore Sun. “If it lingers, we’ll probably proceed with some other forms of trying to find out what it is. It probably wouldn’t be as much of concern than if it was later in spring. Just want to be cautious with it right now. We’ll see.”

Tillman made 30-plus starts in each of the last three years, going 40-24 during that stretch. He’s coming off an uneven 2015 campaign, though. His 4.99 ERA was his highest since 2011, while his strikeouts per nine innings fell for the third season in a row. He also allowed one more hit per nine innings than he did in 2014, per

Tillman’s spot in the Orioles rotation isn’t under threat, but in Vance Worley, Mike Wright and Odrisamer Despaigne, Showalter has three options with starting experience in the majors.

He likely won’t be afraid to roll with one of those pitchers should Tillman’s injury force him to miss a big chunk of the team’s spring preparations.

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