WASHINGTON -- Nationals manager Davey Johnson said he has great memories of his days with the Orioles -- and for good reason.
As a second baseman from 1965 to 1972, Johnson helped Baltimore win four pennants and two World Series titles. As a manager, Johnson guided the Orioles to the postseason in 1996 and '97.
"It was more of a family. It was my first big league team," Johnson said of his playing days. "We tried to live close to each other. We did things off the field, we partied a lot. The Hoffbergers [the team's owners] believed in partying. Of course, we won a lot, and there was a lot to party for."
The one memory that sticks out for Johnson occurred at a party held by then Orioles owner Jerold Hoffberger in 1966.
Johnson and catcher Andy Etchebarren noticed that the team's best player, Frank Robinson, fell in the swimming pool, and they noticed that Robinson wasn't coming up for air.
"Andy Etchebarren and I were looking down at him in the bottom of the pool, and we both jumped in and saved him. He didn't know how to swim," Johnson recalled. "He was nothing but rock-hard muscle. We don't know why he went into the pool, but we were not going to let him drown.
"It was just a family atmosphere. That's what we loved about the Orioles. We went through the good and bad together. We had a lot more good."
Lidge hoping to start throwing off mound soon
WASHINGTON -- Nationals reliever Brad Lidge, who is on the disabled list because of a sports hernia, is going to have a follow up with his doctor in Philadelphia during beginning of next week.
If the checkup goes well, Lidge is expected to work off the mound before Wednesday's game at Citizens Bank Park.
"It will be an easy off-the-mound [session] for the first one," Lidge said. "We are already at that point where it's building up really fast. We have been working hard, and it's paying off."
On Thursday, Lidge will go to the team's complex in Viera, Fla., where he will have more bullpen sessions for a week to 10 days before going into a rehab assignment.
Lidge hopes to be activated from the disabled list on June 15.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.