The Orioles haven’t announced how they’ll make room for Bill Hall on the 40-man roster, but pitcher Brad Bergesen appears to be safe. Hall is wearing No. 35 tonight, which used to belong to Bergesen. However, the corresponding move apparently does not involve him.
The Orioles could transfer second baseman Brian Roberts to the 60-day disabled list, but they really want to avoid it.
Another 25-man roster move is forthcoming. The Orioles will add a position player, probably by tomorrow, and return to a four-man bench.
Meanwhile, the Orioles have seven players on the disabled list who were projected to head north with them after spring training: Zach Britton, Taylor Teagarden, Tsuyoshi Wada, Nolan Reimold, Mark Reynolds, Endy Chavez and Matt Lindstrom. This list doesn’t include Roberts, who figured to begin the season on the DL.
Wada will fly to Sarasota on Monday to begin the rehab process after undergoing ligament-reconstructive surgery on his left elbow. Chavez will join him Monday or Tuesday.
“It’s getting a little crowded in Sarasota,” manager Buck Showalter said.
It’s a good thing the Orioles focused on increasing their organizational depth this year.
“We’ll continue to use the depth of our organization like all clubs have to do at some point,” Showalter said. “You just don’t want it to be this much.”
The Orioles got the MRI back on Lindstrom’s right middle finger, but it may not be ready until Monday.
Reynolds strained his oblique while throwing during batting practice yesterday, making him unavailable for last night’s game.
“We were trying to wait 24 hours, but in my experience, I’ve never really seen that be something minor the next day,” Showalter said. “We’re going to place him on the disabled list retroactive to one day. We’d feel real good if he made the DL period. Those things are usually pretty lengthy.”
Shortstop J.J. Hardy had a similar injury last year and missed a month.
“What’s tough about it is, we waited three or four days on J.J. and he didn’t feel a thing in batting practice, but then the first hard swing he took, he did it again,” Showalter said. “You’ve got to be careful.”
The injury is similar to what Chavez is experiencing, but in a different location.
Showalter had his choice of left fielders and third basemen today. He decided to put Hall in left and Steve Tolleson at third after consulting with Triple-A Norfolk manager Ron Johnson.
“Bill’s had more experience in left field,” Showalter said. “Ron and I have been talking a lot lately. He picks it up on first ring now. ‘What do you want now? Who’s next?’ The problem with the moves, and what I feel bad about, is we’re taking their players but we’re not replacing them because they’re replacing disabled players. But we have some depth and I know they’re in the process of doing some things to maintain that.
“I lean on Ron a lot, handicapping positions and what they’re best at. He’s had Tolleson, too. We got to see Stevie in spring training, too. Just trying to keep people where they’re most comfortable.”
Hall was 8-for-18 with a double and two home runs against left-handed pitching at Norfolk this season. He’ll face a lefty tonight in Tampa Bay’s Matt Moore.
“Billy’s 32,” Showalter said. “He’s a guy that a lot of teams have coveted his makeup and his approach and teammate skills. A guy who in the past has handled left-handed pitching well and can play multiple positions. He should fit into our clubhouse very well.”
The Orioles promoted infielder Bobby Stevens from Single-A Frederick to Norfolk in an attempt to fill out a roster that’s slowly being picked apart.
Showalter was leaning toward using Matt Wieters as his designated hitter tonight. The collision last night solidified those plans.