After spending most of last year, and all of this one up until now, with Robert Andino as his double-play partner for the most part, Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy has Brian Roberts to his left tonight against Pittsburgh.
He was asked what Roberts’ return means to the Orioles.
“A lot,” Hardy said. “I mean other than the fact that he is a great player, there’s the leadership. He’s been around our clubhouse, even though he hasn’t been able to play. Just going to be nice to have him back on the field.”
For a brief time early last year, Hardy played alongside Roberts.
“It was good, it was fun. He’s definitely going to help our team out. Looking forward to it,” Hardy said.
Hardy does not expect to have any issues getting used to working with Roberts in turning double plays again.
“I don’t think it will take too much time,” he said. “He’s been out there and flipped me some balls from second pretty recently so I don’t think it will be too big of an adjustment.”
Several O’s players, Hardy included, have said they are excited to have Roberts back, and that they admired what it took for Roberts’ comeback to reach this point.
“We all do,” Hardy said. “I mean that’s a tough thing to come back from. We don’t know what he has been feeling this last year, year and a half. It’s really nice nice to see him back.”