BALTIMORE –- Chris Davis walked up to the board that had the Orioles lineup on it Sunday morning and couldn’t find his name on it.Davis located the magnetic strip with his name on it, put it in the third spot, and joked: “Do you think anyone will notice?”
Davis’ absence is likely to be noticed. The Orioles officially placed him on the 15-day disabled list shortly before Sunday’s game. Davis is out until at least May 11 with a strained left oblique, and possibly longer.
“I’m hopeful on the 11th. I’m not expecting it. It wouldn’t be very smart to think it’s a given,” manager Buck Showalter said.
Showalter wasn’t specific about the length of time Davis may miss.
“I was hopeful. Chris has never had this before, which is good, but he doesn’t have anything to gauge it by. If you go through the studies through the years, there’s three types: low, medium and high. I’m not sure the terminology, but there are three levels of it. Where they think it is is not the highest level. The average time is a pretty definitive time that’s kind of followed through the years. It depends on where we caught it,” Showalter said.
Last year, Wei-Yin Chen had an oblique strain and missed nearly two months.
“Unlike the past, we’ve come a long way with these things. You can test it to see if it’s ready for baseball, baseball testing, so to speak, going out on the field and hitting, whatever without having a setback, to see if it’s healed. Chris told me yesterday, ‘I’ve always been a very fast healer.’ We’ll see, but the normal time on these things is more than the DL period, but we’ll see,” Showalter said.
Davis said on Saturday night he wanted to travel with the team, but Showalter said he may remain in Baltimore with his wife, who is eight months pregnant, or could go to rehab in Sarasota, Fla.
The Orioles are getting ready to play on Sunday a man short and they could add T.J. McFarland for Tuesday’s game. Troy Patton is eligible for reinstatement on Wednesday.
Nick Markakis will play first base for the second game in a row on Sunday. Ryan Flaherty can also play there. Norfolk’s first basemen Chris Marrero and Brett Wallace aren’t considered viable alternatives because they’re hitting poorly and Bowie’s Christian Walker is probably too raw.
Showalter didn’t rule out the acquisition of another first baseman.
“Yes, there are other people, but nobody yet that we like better than the options we have in-house, yet,” Showalter said.
The Orioles released Steve Pearce, who they designated for assignment on Tuesday.