Orioles forced into another flurry of roster moves

The lineup was a late posting again yesterday. Manager Brandon Hyde explained that the Orioles had “a bunch of things going on right now.”

It must have been quite a scene.

Bring players to Philadelphia and calculate how many are needed on the active roster and for which injured Orioles.

Outfielder Anthony Santander avoided the injured list, but didn’t figure to be much of a contributor off the bench with a sore left hamstring. As if his sore left ankle needed company.

The starter for Sunday against the Rangers is listed as TBA and could be rookie Chris Ellis, since he also avoided the IL despite his arm fatigue. That, too, was a pregame decision.

With Santander and Ellis marked as keepers, the Orioles needed only to officially recall infielder Jahmai Jones as Ramón Urías’ replacement and reliever Konner Wade as César Valdez’s replacement. But only after they decided that Urías needed to be shut down with a right adductor strain.

Urias-Swings-Gray-TOR-Sidebar.jpgUrías is eligible to return on the penultimate game of the season, but what’s the point? He’s been in and out of the lineup with this injury and has nothing else to prove to the club.

He didn’t just pass the audition, he crushed it.

There’s the .361 on-base percentage that leads American League rookies with a minimum of 280 plate appearances and ranks third in the majors. It currently ranks as the seventh-highest single-season OBP by an Orioles rookie in club history, with the same minimum qualifier, and the best since Hyun Soo Kim (.382) in 2016.

Urías batted .348 (24-for-69) with runners in scoring position and .343 (12-for-35) with RISP and two outs. His .348 average led the club and ranked fourth in the American League for players with a minimum of 65 at-bats.

Let him sit on these numbers and give the last few starts to Richie Martin or Jones.

Just my opinion.

The Orioles now have two players on the 10-day injured list, including reliever Tanner Scott, who isn’t expected to pitch again this season. They have seven on the 60-day IL, which in some cases is just procedural to create room on the 40-man roster: pitchers Hunter Harvey, Bruce Zimmermann, Matt Harvey, Jorge López and Travis Lakins Sr., outfielder DJ Stewart and infielder Jorge Mateo.

Zimmermann has rejoined Norfolk and, from what I’m hearing, remains a strong possibility to pitch again for the Orioles this season. A right ankle sprain while working out in the weight room kept him from making an August start at Fenway Park as he was ready to leave the Tides.

The Loyola Blakefield graduate and Ellicott City resident hasn’t been on the mound with the Orioles since June 13.

Hunter Harvey also is eligible to return, with his 60 days passing a while ago, but it’s exceedingly unlikely to happen.

Harvey hasn’t officially been shut down for the rest of the season, but his last appearance with Norfolk was Sept. 1, when he allowed four runs and four hits in two-thirds of an inning. And there are no immediate plans to get him into another game.

A strained lat muscle originally put him on the injured list, but a right triceps strain was listed as his injury when the club transferred him to the 60-day.

There also was the oblique strain in an exhibition game that delayed his 2021 debut until June 4.

Harvey made seven appearances in 2019, 10 in 2020 and nine this season, for a grand total of 23 2/3 innings.

The questions will remain the same in spring training 2022. About his health and whether he can maintain it. About how the Orioles would like to use him.

From what I’m hearing, he won’t be used again in 2021.

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