"That made things easier,'' he said. "I knew he was in the game, so I knew I didn't have much to worry about. It was cool also to have [Adam Jones] out there in center field — I looked out there and saw him. All the guys there, not just the guys we brought, all the guys were cool so it was a good time ... a good experience."
Getting a break
- Orioles sign top draft pick Kevin Gausman
- Orioles pregame: Chris Davis making his first big-league start in left
- Bundy and Machado are No. 2 and 3 prospects in all of baseball, according to Keith Law
- Baseball players on the move this offseason
- 35th annual OriolesREACH Holiday Party for Kids [Pictures]
- Major League Baseball's winter meetings [Pictures]
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Oriole Park at Camden Yards, 333 W Camden St, Baltimore, MD 21201, USA
The Orioles who didn't go to Kansas City for the All-Star Gamegot a much-needed four-day vacation. That might not seem like much of a break during a 162-game season, but it's a big deal for a player such as J.J. Hardy, who has been struggling at the plate and playing through some nagging injuries.
"It helps a lot,'' Hardy said. "We get physically tired. I don't know how many days off we've had in the first 80 or 85 games, but people don't realize how mentally fatiqueing it is. I think more than physically, the mental break is the biggest thing for a lot of us. Me, definitely."
Hardy is one of the guys who also needed some time off to recuperate physically. He has been playing with a sore throwing shoulder for most of the season, but said it is feeling stronger following the four-day break.
"I feel like yesterday — at the little workout we had — my shoulder felt better,'' he said. "I'm hoping that it feels good the rest of the way."
The Orioles have activated outfielder Endy Chavez from the disabled list. He had been sidelined with a hamstring strain. Still, Chris Davis started Friday night's game in left field, a position that he had never before played at the major league level. That's both a reflection of how much Chavez has struggled offensively this season and the Orioles' desperate need to restart their stalled offense.
The Orioles sent outfielder Xavier Avery down to Triple-A Norfolk on Thursday night to clear a roster spot.
Around the horn
Jim Palmer's sculpture will be unveiled behind center field Saturday during a ceremony that begins at 2:15 p.m… …The Orioles production department was recognized as the "Best Overall Video Display In Baseball" at the annual Information Display Entertainment Association Conference in Minneapolis earlier this week…Top pitching prospect Dylan Bundy will start Saturday at Grove Stadium in Frederick and the first 1,000 fans will get a Dylan Bundy T-shirt.Orioles Insider | Live scores | Photos | Baseball app