The Orioles announced today that they have placed left fielder Hyun Soo Kim on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 11, with a strained hamstring. In his place, the club has selected the contract of outfielder Julio Borbon from Double-A Bowie and designated outfielder Henry Urrutia for assignment. Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com first reported that Urrutia was to be designated for assignment.
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The 29-year-old Urrutia received a $779K signing bonus when inking a minor league contract with the Orioles out of Cuba back in 2012 and has appeared in parts of big league seasons, hitting .272/.287/.337 in 94 plate appearances. Urrutia was an accomplished hitter in Cuba’s Serie Nacional, with a career line of .350/.426/.517, but he’s never tapped into that power with the Orioles organization. His work at the Triple-A level has yielded a .284 average and .333 OBP, but he’s slugged a timid .383 in that time (957 plate appearances).
Kim, 28, has come a long way since reportedly refusing a minors assignment in Spring Training. The O’s have brought him along slowly and the results have been excellent, as the man nicknamed the “Hitting Machine” in Korea has lived up to that billing with a .329/.410/.454 batting line in 173 trips to the plate. With that type of production, the O’s, who are clinging to a 1.5 game lead in the AL East, will hope that his absence is brief in nature.
The 30-year-old Borbon once looked like a potential catalyst atop the Rangers lineup but hasn’t appeared in the Majors since 2013. He’s a career .272/.318/.347 hitter in the bigs and has delivered a .289/.353/.373 slash with 20 stolen bases in 83 games for Baltimore’s Double-A affiliate this season.