Navarro went 2-for-4 today with his first home run in the Tides’ 4-3 victory over Gwinnett. He’s 3-for-7 in two games after beginning the minor league season on the disabled list with a groin injury.
Navarro was scratched from Wednesday’s lineup, but returned this afternoon at Harbor Park. He’s scheduled to fly into Baltimore tonight. The Orioles open a three-game series against the Red Sox on Friday.
Because Navarro is on the 40-man roster, the Orioles wouldn’t need to make a corresponding move.
The Orioles were the only team to offer Navarro, 25, a major league contract over the winter. The Yankees, among other teams, wanted to sign him to a minor league deal.
Navarro has extensive experience at shortstop, but the Orioles prefer him at second base. Manager Buck Showalter praised his defensive work in spring training, especially on the hard infield at the Braves’ complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
Flaherty strained a muscle in his groin while running to second base on the final play of last night’s game against the Blue Jays. J.J. Hardy and Jonathan Schoop are on the disabled list and the Orioles are short on infielders, using Jimmy Paredes at second base tonight, and can’t afford to wait on Flaherty.
Navarro has never reached the majors. He began playing professionally in 2007 after the Diamondbacks selected him in the third round of the amateur draft. He’s also been in the Royals and Reds organizations.
As for tonight’s game, the Orioles are trailing the Blue Jays 6-0 in the fourth inning and are in jeopardy of being swept at Rogers Centre. The rotation continues to struggle and the Orioles have been impatient at the plate.
Final: For the first time since June 2013, the Orioles have been swept in a three-game series by a division opponent. It was a rough night all around, as Tillman pitched only 4 1/3 innings and, with the exception of a four-run ninth inning, the O’s offense was held in check in a 7-6 loss to the Blue Jays.
Manny Machado was one of the few bright spots, going 2-for-4 with a pair of home runs, including a three-run shot in the top of the ninth inning that gave the Orioles a brief surge. Adam Jones was also 2-for-4 with two runs scored and continues to be a force at the plate. His average now sits at .424.
Meanwhile, the Orioles have lost four straight and sit at 7-9 on the season. After a promising start in Boston, the team finished 2-5 on the road trip and will return home to begin a long homestand that includes series against the Red Sox and White Sox.