Third baseman Manny Machado will attend an appeal hearing Wednesday in an attempt to reduce his five-game suspension, and a final ruling could come by the end of the week.
Executive vice president Dan Duquette will join Machado at the hearing, which will happen in Baltimore.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter hopes a verdict isn’t reached until Saturday, which would allow Machado to play in the club’s day-night doubleheader against the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday at Camden Yards.
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“I don’t think it needs to be resolved before Saturday. What do you think?” Showalter said Tuesday in his pregame news conference.
Machado received the suspension and an undisclosed fine after several skirmishes in a three-game series against the Oakland Athletics at Camden Yards earlier this month.
On June 8, his bat flew out of his hands and beyond third base after Athletics left-hander Fernando Abad threw two pitches near his knees. After the incident, the benches and bullpens cleared for the second time in the series.
Machado also angered Oakland players in that game after he hit catcher Derek Norris with his backswing twice. Two days earlier, Machado had taken exception to a hard tag by Athletics third baseman Josh Donaldson.
Abad received a minor fine, but he wasn’t suspended for his participation in the incident.
“Maybe they’ll take all five games away,” Showalter said. “What did they give the pitcher for hitting him? He’s the one that caused it.”
Machado doesn’t anticipate the suspension to be dropped entirely, though he expressed hope that it would be reduced to as little as one game. He said he expects at least one game to be removed from the penalty, in part because he was ejected from the June 8 game.
Even if Machado still faces a multigame suspension after the hearing, he stood by his decision Wednesday to appeal despite the prolonged process.
“Eventually, it’s going to come to the end,” Machado said. “I’ve been out here playing. I don’t want to be down for five days and not help out my teammates in any way.”
Tillman, Norris in consideration for Friday
Right-handers Chris Tillman and Bud Norris both will take part in a work day Wednesday to determine who will start the second game of Friday’s doubleheader.
Norris left Saturday’s game against the New York Yankees with right groin tightness after five innings. He has been receiving treatment, and if he feels healthy Wednesday, he’ll pitch in his usual rotation spot Friday against the Rays.
Because the Orioles have a scheduled day off Thursday, Tillman can start on regular rest Friday if complications arise with Norris.
“We’re OK to go either way,” Showalter said.
In his last three starts, Norris is 3-0 with a 0.92 ERA, and he hasn’t pitched fewer than five innings in a start all year. Tillman is 1-2 in his last three games despite surrendering just four total runs in that span.
As expected, Showalter said right-hander Kevin Gausman will join the Orioles from Triple-A Norfolk to start the 1:05 p.m. game Friday. The club can add him as its 26th player because its a day-night doubleheader.
After the game, Gausman will return to Norfolk to fulfill the 10-day requirement since being optioned Saturday, and Showalter said he’s a candidate to start next week against the Texas Rangers at Camden Yards.