August 15, 2017: The Orioles lose to the Mariners, 3-1. (Denise Sanders, Baltimore Sun video)
Center fielder Adam Jones received a day off Wednesday afternoon as the Orioles completed their 10-day, 10-game West Coast road trip in Seattle.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he wanted to give Jones the benefit of having consecutive days off. The Orioles are off Thursday after returning to Baltimore following Wednesday's game.
"He's fine," Showalter said. "He's sore, but just wear and tear [of playing] nine days in a row. Trying to give him the benefit of two days. He's available off the bench. I knew I was going to do it one day on this trip. I was hoping it was the only day. We talked about it. He's fine. … I'd like to get him off his legs completely. He's been firing off the front leg a little bit."
Jones was 11-for-36 (.306) with an .871 OPS playing in each of the first nine games of the trip. Five of those 11 hits were for extra bases (three doubles and two homers). He has also hit safely in all six games since moving into the cleanup spot, going 10-for-25 (.400) over that stretch.
Jones has played in 113 of the team's 120 games heading into Wednesday. On Tuesday, he was 1-for-4, hitting a single after fouling a pitch off his foot.
"I asked him, 'The same place?' And he loses [track]," Showalter said of Jones fouling a ball off his foot. "His durability is amazing to me. … I was looking at the games played since he signed the contract and it's pretty impressive.
"Adam's been a rock. … You see the stuff. He fouls a ball off his feet, his leg, shins, and he plays the game. He's a great example for everybody. It's one of those things, you almost have to take it out of his hands. If you ask him, he's always going to want to [play]. But when you get him to almost agree with you, almost, then you know it's probably a good idea."
Hardy continuing to progress
Shortstop J.J. Hardy's recovery from a broken bone in his right wrist remains slow but steady. But before Friday's game at Camden Yards, Hardy is scheduled to take on-field batting practice for the first time since going on the disabled list.
Hardy said he threw long toss and hit in the indoor batting cages to test his wrist and his next step would be to hit on the field.
Hardy will be eligible to return from the DL on Friday, but obviously he won't make that date. Even after taking on-field batting practice a few times, he must still go on a minor league rehabilitation assignment to get back to game speed, and it's not clear how many games he would need before being ready to return.
Hardy said earlier this week that he was aiming to return by the beginning of September.
When he is back, the Orioles will face a tough choice at shortstop because recent trade acquisition Tim Beckham has provided a spark offensively, moving into the leadoff spot. But Hardy is still the quarterback of the infield defensively and a three-time Gold Glove winner.
Orioles announce details for Saturday's Camden Yards celebration
The Orioles announced the complete list of members of the first team to play at Camden Yards to attend Saturday's 25th anniversary ceremony for the ballpark. The group of 19 players and one coach includes Cal Ripken Jr., Mike Mussina, Brady Anderson, Gregg Olson, Chris Hoiles, Bill Ripken, Rick Sutcliffe, Rick Dempsey, Ben McDonald, Mike Devereaux, Sam Horn, Glenn Davis, Joe Orsulak, Leo Gomez, Mark McLemore, Alan Mills, Tim Hulett, Jim Poole and pitching coach Dick Bosman.
Before Saturday's game, the festivities will begin at 6 p.m. with a home run derby featuring Anderson, Devereaux, Hoiles, Horn and Orsulak. After that, the returning members of the 1992 team will be introduced at approximately 6:40 p.m. as part of a special ceremony.
Around the horn
Beckham's 30 hits in his first 15 games with the Orioles were the most since Kenny Lofton had 31 hits in his first 15 games with the Atlanta Braves in 1997. Before that, the first player to have 30 hits in hist first 15 games with a team was Hall of Famer Nap Lajoie, who accomplished the feat in back-to-back years with the Philadelphia Athletics in 1901 (36 hits) and the Cleveland Indians in 1902 (30). … Second baseman Jonathan Schoop has hit safely in 28 of 33 games since the All-Star break and is hitting .319 with eight homers and 32 RBIs over that span.