SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles third baseman Manny Machado said he doesn’t consider his recent setback “a big deal,” and still believes there may be time for him to be ready to play Opening Day -- which is now only two weeks away.
Machado, who had been rehabbing from October knee surgery, hasn’t run in six days because he is dealing with tightness caused by the breaking up of scar tissue in his left knee.
“This was going to happen,” Machado said. “It happened now, and it just set me back a couple days. It's not a big deal.”
Machado said he expects to run again in the “next couple days.”
“It's just hard to explain,” he said. “You don't want to force it and feel like something else is going to go wrong. Might as well just prevent it and not let it happen. It's just tightness.”
Machado initially was supposed to be re-evaluated Tuesday by his surgeon, Dr. Neal ElAttrache, in Los Angeles, but now that almost certainly won’t happen.
“It might be pushed a couple days back, or it might be the same day. We’re still trying to figure it out and see how the next couple days go,” he said. “It might be pushed back maybe a couple days later or even a week or even the same day [Tuesday].”
With Opening Day two weeks from Monday and Machado not yet playing in a game, it’s hard to imagine that he can be ready March 31 at the level he’s accustomed. But he’s not giving up that possibility yet.
“Maybe. I'm still on track. Just a couple days off from running,’” Machado said. “I don't know if I'll make Opening Day or not. It's not in the back of my mind. I'm just trying to get out there first. I'm not worried about playing games yet. I just want to get healthy.
"Once I get healthy, I'll be ready to roll and keep playing and just get back into playing mode.”