The Orioles placed outfielder Craig Gentry on the 10-day disabled list before Saturday's game against the Toronto Blue Jays, paving the way to add a pair of relievers to an overworked bullpen that threw seven innings in Friday's 1-0 13-inning win.
With the move, the Orioles were able to recall left-handed reliever Donnie Hart and right-hander Alec Asher from Triple-A Norfolk.
Asher was eligible to rejoin the team Saturday, but Hart wasn't eligible to be recalled until Thursday. He was able to rejoin the team Saturday as part of a corresponding DL move. Players who are optioned to the minors must remain there for a mandatory 10 days before being recalled unless it is part of a DL or bereavement move.
The Orioles will find out more about the severity of Gentry's fractured right middle finger Sunday when he's scheduled to see a hand specialist.
Gentry sustained a nondisplaced fracture and a laceration in his finger on an attempted bunt attempt in the bottom of the third inning Friday. Gentry entered the game after starting center fielder Adam Jones was ejected in the first inning. Joey Rickard replaced Gentry in the top of the fourth.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he hoped Gentry could avoid the DL and still contribute in some way, especially as a pinch runner.
"We used three last night, which is a little unusual, but we do have that coverage there without Craig. I'd rather have Craig," Showalter said. "It will be interesting to hear what he can actually do. I'm anxious to hear what the doctor says the future might hold after looking at it, about the time frame and what he might be able to do and not do."
Asked whether the Orioles will consider adding another outfielder to replace Gentry, Showalter said it was being considered but any additional outfielder must be added to the organizational 40-man roster, which is currently full.
Now that the team recalled Rickard on Friday as part of Sept. 1 call-ups, the crop of available right-handed-hitting outfielders at Triple-A Norfolk is bare, which could open the door for the Orioles' likely Minor League Player of the Year Austin Hays, who is at Double-A Bowie.
Before Friday's game — and Gentry's injury — executive vice president Dan Duquette said he wanted players at Bowie to play through their upcoming Eastern League playoff run, but didn't rule out the possibility of adding one to the major league roster before then.
Hays, 22, is certainly worthy. He entered Saturday hitting .328/.364/.591 with 31 homers and 90 RBIs in 124 games between High-A Frederick and Bowie. He had 15 homers, 49 RBIs and a .955 OPS in 60 games with the Baysox going into Saturday.
Rickard ready to contribute after brief stint in Norfolk
Gentry's injury means that Rickard, who was called up Friday, will get more playing time in the Orioles outfield.
Rickard was optioned to Norfolk on Aug. 17 — the team chose to send him to the minors rather than expose Gentry to outright waivers — in order to add Rule 5 draft pick Anthony Santander after his minor league rehabilitation assignment expired.
Rickard hit just .191 in 13 games with the Tides, but posted a .345 on-base percentage, working 11 walks in 58 plate appearances. But Rickard said going down to the minors allowed him to play regularly, which was beneficial.
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"Just being up here, knowing you're not getting everyday at-bats, sometimes it makes it tougher," Rickard said. "You put a little pressure on yourself, so it gave me a chance to take a step back and just know you're going to play.
"I think I just was able to take a step back and overall relax and get to where I need to be. I try to make the best out of everything and that's what I did, so hopefully I'm able to contribute to this run."
Rickard was 0-for-3 in his first game back on Friday.
Around the horn
The Orioles' win Friday was the third time in Orioles history that they won a 1-0 game in 13 or more innings. They won a 1-0 game over the Chicago White Sox in 16 innings in 1959 and beat the Milwaukee Brewers, 1-0, in 17 innings in 1974. … Friday's 1-0 game marked just the fifth game in 70 home games at Camden Yards this season that neither team homered. The Orioles have won four of those five games. … Showalter was excited about the first Saturday of the college football season Saturday. "We've all got ties," he said. "Everybody's got a team. I have seven."