Nick Markakis – Flying is a Pain in the Neck for Orioles Outfielder


April 2, 2012; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Baltimore Orioles left fielder Nolan Reimold (14), center fielder Adam Jones (10) and right fielder Nick Markakis (21) congratulate each other after they defeated the Tampa Bay Rays during opening day at Tropicana Field. The Orioles won 7-4. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Growing up in a family that never flew anywhere for anything, I always thought it would be the coolest thing to have a job that required a lot of air travel – like being a baseball player for example. And though I’ve never had that sort of employment, I have flown enough for a variety of reasons to know that the romantic notion of it wears off pretty quickly. It can be a pain.

And it can be a literal pain in the neck, as it is right now for the O’s right fielder Nick Markakis – who literally has some sort of muscle spasms type of issue threatening his participation in the Baltimore Orioles’ opening day tomorrow. The problem arose from his flight from Sarasota to Norfolk.

Markakis may not be the only current baseball casualty of airline travel. Clayton Kershaw has been put on the DL for the first time in his career. He was healthy before the trip to Australia and now has back issues possibly contributable to the journey. This could prove to have been a very expensive trip for the Dodgers – in many ways.

But back to Baltimore and Markakis – who is the senior member now on the Orioles roster. He has been in right field for seven consecutive years, and at this moment, Showalter has alternative lineups both with and without him. Since Tuesday is an off day, it might prove wise to rest him for what would be a couple of days.

Looking for a major comeback season, this little setback has to have Nick fuming internally (the only place he fumes!). He came to camp in top condition and had a great spring season. He was 16-for-45 with six RBIs, six doubles, a triple, and a homer.

Just for fun, I thought I’d look up Markakis’ opening day stats …

2007Twins31002 OF assistsL 4-7
2008Rays3110BBL 2-6
2009Yanks4222W 10-5
2010Rays30102B, 2BBL 3-4
2011Rays3012W 4-1
2012Twins32233B, HRW 4-2
2013Rays5110W 7-4

So that totals to 8-for-24. The assists in the 2007 were both throwing out Justin Morneau – once at second base and once at the plate.

Roch Kubatko tweeted Sunday afternoon – #Orioles haven’t posted their lineup but Chris Davis just put his name in leadoff spot. And catcher. Told Wieters he can DH. Apparently he did that on a magnetic board that Showalter has … Davis is a fun guy to have around.