PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Nolan Reimold can swing the bat without any discomfort in his surgically repaired neck. It’s playing the outfield that’s causing problems and has led to the Orioles’ decision to place him on the 15-day disabled list, a move that will be announced before opening day.
“The two times he tried, looking up bothered him some,” said manager Buck Showalter. “You’ve probably got to be able to look up to play the outfield, depending on your pitching staff. But this buys us some time to get it back, hopefully.
“He’ll take a few days off and then start hitting and see where it is, to try to get everything to quiet down. He’s more sore than anything.
“He still can’t play the outfield comfortably, so we’re still trying to make sure. Got to get him all the way healthy. Hopefully, with a little more time.”
Reimold, who’s 10-for-38 with a home run, didn’t suffer an injury in camp. He’s just continuing the process of recovering from a second surgery to fuse two vertebrae in his neck.
“We talked to him,” Showalter said. “Nolan agrees he’s not where he needs to be. He’s light years ahead of where he was at this time last year. He can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
“Let’s face it, the guy has had two neck fusions - one that didn’t get the results we hoped and one that seems like he’s done real well with. The last four, five games, he seems more comfortable. This guy missed two years. Now, we’re trying to get him to the point where he doesn’t think about it too much when he’s hitting. He’s almost full strength with his arm. Stuff that your back and vertebrae is supposed to do.
“It’s pretty serious stuff obviously. I don’t want to throw a wet blanket over it. He just needs a little more time.”
So does Rule 5 pick Michael Almanzar, who’s headed to the disabled list with left patella tendinitis. He’s 7-for-35 with one home run and nine RBIs.
Almanzar injured his knee while playing first base Saturday in Port Charlotte.
“We were prepared to make a decision on him, but that will wait now,” Showalter said. “Shouldn’t be too long.”