Brian Roberts Likely Bound for DL
Though the team has not formally announced a move involving Roberts or informed the All-Star that he'll be placed on the DL, the club is bringing Norfolk (Triple-A) infielder Justin Turner to Baltimore. That prompted Roberts to concede that he would probably be put on the shelf following the Orioles' 5-2 loss to the Blue Jays.
Roberts raced just to get back in Baltimore's Opening Day lineup after battling a herniated disk in his lower back during spring training. That injury was so bad that he had to return to Baltimore last month to receive an epidural injection and there was speculation that the Orioles would make a trade for an infielder because Roberts wouldn't be ready for the start of the season.
As it turned out, the O's did make a trade -- acquiring Julio Lugo toward the end of spring training -- and Roberts made it back in time for their opener.
Lugo figures to get the bulk of the playing time while Roberts is out.
If there's any good news here, it's that even though Roberts is missing time, he isn't because of his back. That's an injury that could derail an entire season and even throw the remainder of his contract -- a four-year, $40 million pact that runs through 2013 -- into doubt.
Still, that's really putting on the rose-colored glasses.
Roberts is among the best second basemen and leadoff hitters in the game. He led the league in doubles last year, and he's averaged a .290/.370/.444 (AVG/OBP/SLG) line, with 40 steals and 157 games played over the last three seasons.
Between Mike Gonzalez's blown saves and Kevin Millwood's meltdown Sunday, it's been a gloomy first week of the season in Baltimore, and the Roberts injury just adds to that.
The Orioles are 1-5 and just got swept by the Blue Jays over the weekend. With a massive organizational overhaul out of the way, 2010 is supposed to be the year when Baltimore starts making progress in its results on the field. So far, the Orioles are off to a miserable start in that department.