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Nolan Reimold's season likely over, will have spine surgery on Tuesday

ARLINGTON, Texas --Orioles left fielder Nolan Reimold’s season appears over as he awaits corrective surgery this week to fix a spinal fusion procedure performed last June.

Reimold, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list Friday, is scheduled to have the operation Tuesday at the Florida Spine Institute in Clearwater, Fla. During the All-Star break, he was evaluated by neurosurgeon Robert J. Kowalski, who recommended the procedure after a series of tests.

“I don’t think you will see him again this year,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of Reimold. “He’s on the 15[-day disabled list], and we don’t need the spot yet. But if we had to [put him on the 60-day DL to free up a 40-man roster spot], we could, to be frank with you.”

Last June, Reimold had procedure that removed a herniated disk in his neck and fused the vertebrae together, but the nerve inflammation Reimold dealt with in his spine last season has re-emerged.

“The fusion isn’t what they hoped it would be and they want to go correct something that’s not quite right,” Showalter said. “I could tell the last couple games that something wasn’t quite firing. It’s kind of sad in a way, but you want to get it right. First of all, you just want to get his daily day-to-day activities and just living his life right. And the baseball part of it, I’m told, should come.”

Reimold, who was limited to 16 games last season because of the injury, was also on the disabled list for more than seven weeks this season with a right hamstring injury that had lingered since spring training.

The Orioles recalled Danny Valencia to fill Reimold’s spot as the right-handed designated hitter. Reimold was 6-for-27 with one homer and three RBIs since returning from the DL on July 14.

Reimold, 29, has played in just 56 games since the beginning of the 2012 season.

“It’s one thing when doctors free them up to resume activity,” Showalter said. “Maybe they are telling them for a guy working 9 to 5 behind a desk as opposed to a guy playing Major League Baseball against the best players in the world. Those are two different things.

“I think Nolan feels better that it wasn’t something he was trying to do wrong. Did he overdo it? I bet he did, because that’s Nolan. The same reason why you like him. I got a good feeling this will have a happy ending in a lot of ways. He seemed, the last time I talked to him, real ‘let’s go.’ Now you can see it in black and white on a CAT scan, an MRI. Here’s what it is and we are going to get it right.”

The Orioles also purchased the contract of outfielder Henry Urrutia and recalled Danny Valencia on Thursday.

The club designated Chris Dickerson for assignment. Urrutia will fill Dickerson's spot as a left-handed DH and spot outfielder.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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