ANAHEIM, Calif. --Orioles first baseman Chris Davis sat out Saturday's game against the Los Angeles Angels after injuring his right knee the night before, but the team is optimistic that its top run producer will avoid a stint on the disabled list.
Davis said that an MRI on the knee Saturday was read by Angels team doctors and showed patellar tendinosis in his knee. Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said Orioles doctors will read the MRI on Monday, but that he considered Davis day to day.
“It sounds like he's feeling a lot better today,” Duquette said.
Following Saturday's 10-inning 5-4 win over the Angels, Davis said he hoped to return to the starting lineup by Tuesday, which gives him an extra day of rest with Monday's off day.
“In all honesty, I would have loved to play today,” Davis said. “I don't like missing games, obviously. … We got the W [Saturday] and I ate a lot of [sunflower] seeds.”
Orioles manager Buck Showalter was encouraged about Davis and didn't rule out an earlier return. Showalter said he had an alternative lineup on Saturday that included Davis.
“He hasn't done anything on the field yet,” Showalter said. “We're letting it quiet down. We'll see if he can play there [Sunday] or not. There's some temptation given the off day sitting there, a very rare off day in our case. We'll see. … There's a fine line between pushing it to see how it is and having a setback.”
On Saturday, Steve Pearce started at first base and Nolan Reimold was the DH hitting out of the fifth spot.
Pearce will likely see most of the time at first base in Davis' absence, but utility man Ryan Flaherty — who entered the game for Davis on Friday — is another option against right-handed pitching when he's not playing second base.
Right fielder Nick Markakis did early work at first base before Saturday's game in case he is needed there, but he'd likely move to first only as part of a late-inning defensive switch.
“I've got two or three other options,” Showalter said. “Nick came out early, got some work in to cover us. Matty [Wieters] can play it. So can Flaherty. [Backup catcher Chris] Snyder has played one game over there. We all know Adam [Jones] can play over there. Just ask him. And he probably could.”
Davis left Friday's game after his knee buckled while running through first base on a fifth-inning groundout to third. At first, the injury looked serious as Davis hobbled into the Orioles dugout and struggled to put any weight on his right leg.
But the fact that Showalter considered playing Davis on Saturday has to be a good sign. The Orioles have existing options at first base, so they don't necessarily need to make a quick roster move to compensate. Monday's day off also will help.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun