Orioles third baseman Manny Machado’s next checkup on his left knee will be Friday afternoon in Los Angeles, and the hope is that he will be cleared to resume some baseball activities.
Regardless, the 21-year-old All-Star is expected to fly back from Los Angeles to Baltimore on Friday and be at the Orioles’ annual FanFest celebration at the Baltimore Convention Center on Saturday, according to a club source.
Initially, the appointment and FanFest conflicted.
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Machado will see Los Angeles Dodgers team orthopedist Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who performed the October surgery on Machado’s left knee to repair a torn medial patellofemoral ligament.
Machado, who was injured running to first base against the Tampa Bay Rays on Sept. 23, is considered ahead of schedule based on his last appointment with ElAttrache.
Originally, the timetable for Machado’s return was four to six months -- which would put his availability for Opening Day in jeopardy.
But now, Machado and the Orioles are cautiously optimistic that he’ll be ready to play when the regular season starts March 31 against the Boston Red Sox at Camden Yards.