Nick Markakis underwent surgery today in Sarasota and manager Buck Showalter spoke to him this morning.
Pins were inserted into Markakis' thumb instead of a T-plate, which is a less-invasive procedure. They will be removed in three weeks if it heals as expected. However, the timetable for Markakis' potential return hasn't changed. The Orioles would have to make the playoffs and probably get into the second round.
"He called me, I think, from the recovery room," Showalter said. "He was very, not really groggy. There wasn't much edge to it.
"They never really opened it up. The pins were put in there and you'll be able to see them. They said in about three weeks they should come out. So that was good. They don't have to go back in there to take them out.
"They originally thought they were going to put a plate in there, which was a little concern about the range of motion, but they were able to get the pins in there and put everything back in place and align it properly.
"Three weeks ... you guys can do the math. But I will say that Nicky is one of our fastest healers. There's a saying in baseball that he's a good tissue guy and he's a bad tissue guy. I'm not sure what that means. I know at our age we're all bad tissue guys."
Chris Tillman threw his first bullpen session and said his elbow felt great. Wei-Yin Chen also had a positive side session.
Showalter said he has three or four candidates to make Thursday's start against the Rays.
Troy Patton will throw another side session Wednesday and live batting practice Friday.
Jim Thome will take "cage BP" on Wednesday, the next step from the dry swings that he took a few days ago. He could play in the instructional league that begins this week.
The Orioles checked on available outfielders before deciding there wasn't an option out there that qualified as an upgrade over Endy Chavez and LJ Hoes.
"I know Dan (Duquette), as he always has, has done a lot of calls daily," Showalter said. "I don't think anybody this time of the year is going to think they can replace a Nick Markakis. And after looking at the options that are out there, which Dan and I talked yesterday, today, day before yesterday, as soon as (the injury) happened, we felt like what was out there wasn't any better, as far as how it was presented to our organization, than Endy and LJ that were already here. That was it in a nutshell.
"If you want to trade Manny (Machado) for a guy who's going to be here three weeks and not be eligible for the playoffs if we're lucky enough to make it, we probably could have done that. Not going to do it."
Forgive my earlier typo. Hoes was a third-round pick in 2008, one round after Xavier Avery.
For the Rays:
B.J. Upton CF
Jeff Keppinger 3B
Ben Zobrist SS
Evan Longoria DH
Matt Joyce RF
Ben Francisco LF
Luke Scott 1B
Ryan Roberts 2B
Jose Molina C
Matt Moore LHP