Orioles outfielder Felix Pie underwent an MRI this morning and learned that he could miss up to three months with an injury to his latissimus dorsi muscle.
Pie went on the disabled list April 16 with an injury classified as a strained muscle in his upper back, but further examination today revealed a more serious problem.
There's been no talk of surgery, and Pie is debating whether to stay here or report to Sarasota to rehab after an extended period of rest.
President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail confirmed the injury a few minutes ago and compared it to the one suffered by reliever Jim Miller a few years ago, where the muscle separates from the bone.
"Left alone, I'm told - and they have significant medical information on this - the thing will heal itself as quickly or more quickly than if you did something on a surgical basis," MacPhail said. "But it's going to take some time to go through the process that it has to go through."
Pie had the MRI at Johns Hopkins this morning and was sent to another physician around noon. That's when he was informed that he could miss the next three months.
Pie, who believes the injury occurred when he made a throw to the plate on Opening Day, is batting .400 with a home run in eight games. Lou Montanez took his spot on the 25-man roster, but he'll compete with Nolan Reimold and Luke Scott for the available starts in left field.
The Orioles don't have immediate plans to look outside the organization for another outfielder, believing they have a surplus on hand.
Pie was sidelined in spring training with a shoulder injury. He missed the last nine games of the 2009 season with a strained left quadriceps muscle that prevented him from playing winter ball.