Orioles first baseman Chris Davis will begin a minor league rehab assignment Saturday at Double-A Bowie. He will start at first base and bat second.
The plan is for Davis to get at least four at-bats and play at least seven innings.
“I don’t want him hitting leadoff, and I don’t want him to have the problem of getting enough at-bats before he may or may not come out of the game,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “The plan is for him to potentially DH on Sunday, the 2 o’clock game, but he’s going to come back here after the game tomorrow, and he and I are going to sit down and talk. Lord willing, our travels bring us back together tomorrow night.”
Though Davis could possibly be activated from the disabled list Sunday, the first day he's eligible to return, that seems unlikely. He'll be evaluated after his first rehab game Saturday.
“Let’s see how we get through tomorrow,” Showalter said. “I would say ‘definitely no,’ if I didn’t think that was [a possibility]. Let’s get one day. He had a really good day. There’s two parts to it. He’s got to come here in and feel good physically like he did today. He’ll go over there and take batting practice and play, hopefully, seven-to-nine innings and get four at-bats, hopefully, and then he and I will sit down when he gets back with [head trainer] Richie [Bancells].”
Infielder Jonathan Schoop is gradually becoming more comfortable both at the plate and defensively, and being reunited with minor league teammate Manny Machado has helped. The two first played together at Low-A Delmarva, where Machado played shortstop and Schoop played second base.
But with the Orioles, Schoop has two Gold Glove winners – Machado and shortstop J.J. Hardy – working beside him.
“Yes, for sure. Me and him, we’re like brothers,” Schoop said, “especially we’ve got J.J. [Hardy] in the middle. It’s really good. I think if you play with good guys, you are ... going to get better.”
Schoop has driven in four runs in his last three games and seems to rise to the occasion in pressure situations. He hit a game-winning two-run homer Wednesday, drove in an insurance run in Thursday’s win, and sent home the go-ahead run Friday.
“The one thing you look for is a guy that doesn’t let one at-bat dictate the whole night,” Showalter said. "We’ve seen him have some challenging at-bats and then all of a sudden, really whack one somewhere. It’s still in the infant stage of his career, hopefully. Jon’s pretty tough mentally. He’s got a real strong support group around him. He’s a guy that’s real easy to like and the guys feel real comfortable imparting advice for him, and he’s real receptive to it, and not to a fault.”
Schoop said he’s getting more comfortable in the big leagues every day.
“I’ve got a month here already,” Schoop said. “My teammates really help me a lot. Bobby Dickerson, Buck, all the staff and my teammates. They’ve been really good with me, give me some advice, [help] me through my bad and my good things ... I have a lot more to go,” Schoop said. “Every day, you try to get better. I try to get better every day. I’m trying to learn as much as I can.”