General manager Mike Elias said Saturday that Valaika and Ramon Urias are the primary candidates to start at second base, Roch Kubatko of reports.

The duo was competing for a utility role throughout camp but are now battling for a starting spot after expected starter Yolmer Sanchez was designated for assignment Saturday. Valaika had a solid campaign in his first year with the Orioles in 2020, posting a .277/.315.475 slash line with eight homers in 150 plate appearances. The pair seems likely to begin the season splitting time at the keystone.

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