Orioles outfield prospect Austin Hays is set to undergo surgery to repair an ankle fracture, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com was among those to report. Hays, who made his big league debut last September after an enormous minor league season sent him skyrocketing up national prospect rankings, was limited to 75 games in 2018 and batted just .235/.266/.410 in that time. Though he’s had a brief cup of coffee in the Majors, Hays has yet to even suit up for a Triple-A game; he hit .329/.365/.593 with 32 homers, 32 doubles and five triples between Class-A Advanced and Double-A last season and spent the bulk of 2018 in Double-A (when healthy). Hays had been slated to play in the Arizona Fall League, but it seems he’ll now forgo that to clean up the lingering ankle issue that has plagued his 2018 season. He only recently turned 23 and is still viewed as an important piece of the Orioles’ future, though the 2018 season looks to have gone down as something of a lost season for the 2016 third-rounder. Hays himself has also confirmed that he’ll have surgery tomorrow (Twitter link).
Elsewhere in the AL East…
- David Price has an opt-out clause in his seven-year, $217MM contract following the season, but the left-hander’s recent comments to Christopher Smith of MassLive.com strongly suggest he’ll remain with the Red Sox. Asked if he would consider opting out because of his recent stretch of dominance, Price bluntly replied: “Why would I leave here to go to a team that’s not as good as this team? I came here to win.” Of course, it’s never seemed likely that the 33-year-old Price would opt out of the remaining $127MM on his deal (as explored here last week), but those comments make that outcome seem all the more certain. Over his past 128 2/3 innings (including tonight’s start), Price has a 2.94 ERA with a 137-to-27 K/BB ratio. Nearly 20 percent of the 42 runs he’s allowed in that 21-start stretch came in one outing; excluding that hiccup, he’s been a brilliant complement to Chris Sale atop the Boston rotation, creating a formidable one-two punch for rookie manager Alex Cora.
- Aroldis Chapman could be activated from the disabled list sometime next week, Yankees manager Aaron Boone tells reporters (link via Newsday’s Erik Boland). Chapman, on the disabled list due to tendinitis, threw a side session Wednesday which Boone says “went really well.” The Yanks also announced prior to today’s game that righty Chance Adams has been recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He’s been working in a relief role in Triple-A since his last demotion, so he could give the Yanks some relief depth in the season’s final weeks. In four bullpen appearances in Triple-A, Adams allowed one run on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.