Manny Machado’s first taste of the majors keeps getting sweeter.
Machado and Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez have been named the American League Co-Players of the Week for the period ending August 12th.
Machado batted .375 (6-for-16) with a double, triple, three home runs, seven RBIs and five runs scored in four games after the Orioles selected his contract from Double-A Bowie on Thursday. He homered twice on Friday in his second game.
Machado shares the record with at least one extra-base hit in four consecutive games to begin his Orioles career, joining Ray Knight (1987), Lee May (1975) and Frank Robinson (1966).
Also, I’m hearing that pitcher Jason Berken isn’t being recalled Tuesday as the corresponding roster move after the Orioles optioned reliever Miguel Socolovich following yesterday’s game. I’m done speculating.
NOTE: The Orioles have reacquired reliever J.C. Romero, according to multiple industry sources. According to one source, the Indians will receive a minor league infielder - an “organizational guy.”
I’m hearing it’s Norfolk infielder Carlos Rojas.
Romero opted out of his contract at Triple-A Norfolk and signed with the Indians’ Triple-A affiliate in Columbus. He has an Aug. 15 opt-out, and the Indians weren’t going to select his contract.
The Orioles had an agreement with the Indians that they could bring back Romero if they found a spot for him in their bullpen. Apparently, they found a spot now after optioning Socolovich.
Romero, 36, is 34-28 with a 4.15 ERA in parts of 14 major league seasons. He’s posted a 2.74 ERA in 25 combined appearances with Norfolk and Columbus.
Romero would join Troy Patton as a second left-hander in the bullpen.
The Orioles will need to clear a spot for Romero on the 40-man roster.
Also, the club did plan on recalling Berken tomorrow, but I’m told that the Orioles are dealing with a physical issue, which could lead to a pitcher going on the disabled list.
If that happens, the Orioles could bring back a pitcher before the 10-day required stay in the minors. I expect to see Steve Johnson in the clubhouse tomorrow afternoon.
I’ll speculate one more time. Is there an issue with Wei-Yin Chen that would prevent him from starting tomorrow night, and that would allow Johnson to rejoin the rotation? Chen threw in the outfield today, simulating his delivery. Maybe it was a normal work day. Maybe the Orioles were checking on his health.
OK, now I’m done speculating.
Stay tuned. And enjoy that off day.
Update: The Orioles confirmed the trade in a press release.
Romero has held left-handed hitters to a .218/.313/.293 line in 1,121 plate appearances over his career. He’ll give manager Buck Showalter a situational lefty in the bullpen.
“He’s battle-tested and very effective against left-handers,” said executive vice president Dan Duquette. “We already had him in the organization, so we know.”
Rojas batted .226/.285/.248 in 48 games with Double-A Bowie and Norfolk this season. He’s good with the glove.
Also, Duquette said Chen is fine and is expected to make Tuesday’s start.
Update II: Apparently, the Orioles won’t have two left-handers in their bullpen.
Patton is expected to go on the disabled list after rolling his ankle last night.
He has put together 17 consecutive scoreless appearances to lower his ERA to 2.58.
Meanwhile, Zach Britton allowed six runs and three hits in 3 2/3 innings in his first outing at Triple-A Norfolk since being optioned after last Tuesday night’s game. He threw 81 pitches, 40 for strikes, with four walks and two wild pitches.
The Orioles need a starter for Saturday and Britton would be working on normal rest, but he’s an unlikely call-up.