The Baltimore Orioles have gotten away with three starters and a five-man bench. That could change tomorrow.
The Baltimore Orioles have benefitted from the minimum 10-day disabled list feature of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Wade Miley hit the DL because of an upper respiratory infection, retroactive to March 30. Thanks to the new CBA in place, Miley is eligible to return on Sunday vs. the Yankees. The Baltimore Orioles have been expecting Miley to return as soon as he is eligible.
Against the current batch of Yankees players, Miley has not allowed a home run to any of them. Success against Miley comes from Chase Headley, who is 9-for-31 against him, and Brett Gardner, who is 5-for-17. Jacoby Ellsbury also has had some success against Miley, going 3-for-12.
Who will be optioned?
Coming off the DL tomorrow would place Miley on the mound for the series finale against the Yankees. To make room, one of Joey Rickard, Craig Gentry, or Trey Mancini, could be removed from the 25-man roster.
It might be safe to assume that Gentry isn’t going anywhere, for now at least. For one, he doesn’t have any options, so the only alternative here would be to DFA him. Manager Buck Showalter knows what Gentry can do, and he’s been high on Gentry for weeks.
Rickard could be the next safest of the three, as he may present a better option in left field vs. left-handed pitchers than Hyun Soo Kim. In 93 career plate appearances vs. LHP, Rickard has hit .302/.355/.477. The former Rule-5 draft pick could be looking at leadoff duties vs. LHP this season.
So, if Gentry and Rickard hang around, that means Mancini would be the player that gets optioned. He and Rickard both have three options remaining. However, Mancini could be the odd man out.
Optioning Mancini is a tough call to make. He had such a good spring and can get on base against any pitcher. His .333/.379/.600 line in 60 at-bats helped push him north, and him learning how to be an outfielder provides the Orioles with depth in the event of any injury. However, he is still learning to play the outfield and could benefit from more time starting in Norfolk.
How would the Orioles look after optioning Mancini?
The Orioles prepare to head to Boston after tomorrow afternoon’s game, and per information obtained from Roster Resource, the Red Sox list a left-hander to start on Tuesday night.
Looking ahead to the four-game set in Toronto, the Jays could throw two left-handers (J.A. Happ, and Francisco Liriano) against the O’s.
The decision to send one of those players down is going to be one of the more tougher decisions that manager Buck Showalter is going to face this season, and it’s only the first week. But just when you think that’s a hard one, don’t forget, the Orioles will need a fifth starter next Saturday.