John Means’ long recovery from Tommy John surgery is nearing an end, as the Orioles southpaw threw a bullpen session yesterday and is tentatively expected to start Tuesday’s game against the Cardinals, though the O’s haven’t yet announced most of their upcoming rotation alignment. “I’ve been waiting a while for this, so just looking forward to whenever that opportunity is, I take advantage of it,” Means told MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko and other reporters today.
The de facto ace of Baltimore’s pitching staff during the club’s rebuild, Means posted a 3.72 ERA over 353 1/3 innings for the O’s from 2019-2022, though TJ surgery ended his 2022 season after only two starts and eight innings. Between that procedure and then a back strain that delayed his rehab earlier this year, Means hasn’t much contributed to the Orioles resurgence that included a winning record in 2022 and now the American League’s best record in 2023. Naturally, Means is both “really excited to compete again” in general, and especially for a team that suddenly looks like a World Series contender. It remains to be seen how exactly he’ll fit into the Orioles’ pitching plans, and Means said that he hasn’t talked to the club yet about starting or relieving, though he is open to either.
More from around the AL East…
- Jason Adam has played two games of catch since going on the 15-day IL, and the Rays reliever isn’t reporting any soreness from the left oblique strain that has kept him from pitching since August 27. While there’s still plenty of fluidity to Adam’s status, manager Kevin Cash told reporters (including Kristie Ackert of the Tampa Bay Times) that the club is tentatively hoping Adam can return when the Rays open their next homestand on September 19.
- In other Rays health updates, Manuel Margot is slated for a minor league rehab game on Tuesday. The outfielder underwent elbow surgery in mid-August, and is roughly on track with his initial recovery timeline of 3-4 weeks. Ackert also spoke with Shane Baz, who is continuing to make progress from his September 2022 Tommy John surgery and is looking to start throwing live batting practice sessions in the instructional league by the end of September. “I will have a pretty normal offseason and then it’s full-go in spring,” Baz said.
- The Yankees called up right-hander Matt Bowman and left-hander Anthony Misiewicz from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, after optioning relievers Ron Marinaccio and Matt Krook to Triple-A after yesterday’s game. Misiewicz is set to make his debut in the pinstripes after New York claimed the southpaw off waivers from the Tigers back in July, as Misiewicz has thus far spent his Yankees tenure in the minors. For Bowman, the righty is now set to make his first MLB appearance since 2019, when he was a member of the Reds. Between the canceled 2020 minor league season and recovering from a Tommy John surgery, Bowman didn’t pitch at all from 2020-22 before returning to toss 56 Triple-A frames this season.
- Jasson Dominguez was a late scratch from the Yankees lineup today, as the rookie outfielder is dealing with right elbow inflammation. The severity of the injury isn’t yet known, but it’s an unfortunate setback for a player who has brought some spark to a disappointing season in the Bronx. In his first 33 Major League plate appearances, “the Martian” has already hit four homers en route to a .980 OPS.