The Orioles have announced a few roster moves, including placing infielder Steve Pearce on the 60-day disabled list and reinstating reliever Darren O’Day from the 15-day DL. The club has also purchased the contract of first baseman Trey Mancini from Triple-A Norfolk.
Before sending him to the DL and ending his season, the Orioles shut down Pearce indefinitely Wednesday on account of a right flexor mass strain. Manager Buck Showalter said then that Pearce was a possibility to return later this month, but that won’t be the case. This injury could wrap up Pearce’s second tenure with the Orioles, who acquired him from the Rays prior to the Aug. 1 non-waiver trade deadline. The impending free agent hit an outstanding .309/.388/.520 and mashed 10 home runs in 232 plate appearances with Tampa Bay this year, but his numbers dipped in Baltimore as he dealt with an elbow injury.
Pearce batted .217/.329/.400 with three homers in 70 PAs as a member of the Orioles and could end up hitting the open market, where the soon-to-be 34-year-old would try to outdo the $4.75MM deal he signed with the Rays last winter. First, though, Pearce will have to go undergo forearm surgery, which will require a four- to six-month recovery, Rich Dubroff of CSN Mid-Atlantic tweets.
O’Day, meanwhile, hasn’t taken a major league mound since mid-August because of a right shoulder cuff strain. While his return is a welcome one for an Orioles team with a three-game lead on an American League wild-card spot, O’Day hasn’t been as effective this year as he was in previous seasons. Injuries have been a problem, as O’Day was previously on the DL from early June until the end of July thanks to a hamstring strain. When O’Day has pitched, he has issued 4.3 walks per nine innings, more than doubling his 2015 rate and contributing to a jump in his ERA from 1.52 to 3.95. On the positive side, O’Day has posted a posted a terrific 10.87 K/9.
Mancini, whom the Orioles selected in the eighth round of the 2013 draft, has done nothing but produce since joining the organization. After hitting .280/.349/.427 with 13 home runs in 536 Triple-A plate appearances this season, he could be in line to make his major league debut. MLBPipeline.com ranks the 24-year-old as the Orioles’ fifth-best prospect and praises his offensive abilities.