Reliever Darren O’Day threw off flat ground again today and will step on a mound Monday for the first time since going on the disabled list with a strained right shoulder.
O’Day is eligible to come off the disabled list today, but he obviously isn’t ready and the club won’t rush him.
Manager Buck Showalter said it would be “real ambitious” to expect first baseman Chris Davis to return in three weeks from a strained right oblique.
Davis was placed on the disabled list retroactive to Tuesday after sustaining the injury while lining out to right field in Chicago.
Davis said today that it’s “a little bit better” and offered a favorable comparison to his left oblique injury in 2014.
“Day-by-day,” he said. “Just kind of a touch and feel thing right now. The first week to 10 days, just trying to get the soreness and inflammation and the discomfort out. Just kind of an annoying injury. There’s not really much you can do for it. There’s not really much you can do to protect against it. It’s just one of those mysteries, I guess.
“Obviously, had the left oblique injury a few years ago. I don’t feel like this is as severe, but it takes so much time to get the swelling down, the inflammation out and then you can get to a point where you can try to do any kind of work.”
Davis isn’t blaming his latest injury on one bases-loaded swing.
“It was an accumulation of a few games before the Chicago game,” he said. “I think it was probably just stress. We had a good stretch there where we were playing a lot of games, a lot of long games, a lot of grueling, strenuous games. And I think the competitor in me was really trying to probably do too much. Whether it was in between at-bats, in between games, in between innings. Whatever. Just trying to get going. And I just think it’s one of those things where, like I said, there’s really not much you can do to protect it or strengthen it. It’s just kind of in a vulnerable spot.
“It’s pretty uncomfortable, just either sitting up or laying down trying to find a spot to where you can get somewhat comfortable. I feel like I’m moving around a lot. Sitting in one position for a while, then you get restless and kind of move around. From what I was told, after the first seven to 10 days that should hopefully get a lot better.”
Davis can’t offer a timetable for his return. He was back in the lineup 16 days after the 2014 injury, but never felt quite right.
“I mean, I can’t even remember how long it was with the left oblique,” he said. “I was basically told it’s sensitive. It’s one of those things you don’t want to rush because if you have a setback, it makes things that much harder. But right now just kind of taking it day-by-day.
“Obviously, really frustrated and especially with the way things are going. I’ll be sitting on the bench not really able to do anything except cheer and encourage guys. It’s a pretty awful feeling.”
The first instinct is to rush back. Common sense will hold him back.
“I’m sure that everybody involved is going to try to get me to be more patient,” he said. “My mentality is always to try to do everything I can to get back on the field as quickly as possible. That doesn’t mean that’s always the smartest thing, and I think any injury that I feel like I can play through, I’m going to do that.
“With the hand last year, obviously it was affecting me and it was extremely painful, but I just said, ‘Whatever. I’m going to go out and continue to play as best as I can.’ This is a different injury. Everything we do is twisting and turning.
“I’ll take it day-by-day. They know what they’re doing. I trust them and trust that they have my best interest in mind.”
Davis didn’t intend to become an expert on oblique injuries, but his past could make the process advance more smoothly. It certainly came in handy in Chicago.
“It actually helped the other night, knowing what it feels like before,” Davis said. “Before I injured the other one, I had no clue what it felt like, what the symptoms or whatever you want to call it were, so I just kept going and going and going until I basically couldn’t go anymore.
“The other night, I felt, that kind of feels familiar. I stayed in there for my next at-bat, and the last swing I took, it was like, ‘This isn’t getting any better,’ which is kind of a positive thing, I guess if you want to try and take something positive away from the situation, that I didn’t just stay in there and make it worse.”
Here are the starters for the series against the Indians at Camden Yards: