Baltimore Orioles: Is there concern about Adam Jones?
Adam Jones hasn’t been in the Baltimore Orioles’ lineup since this past Saturday in Toronto due to residual effects of a shoulder strain. Jones missed a few games against Philadelphia prior to that, before playing two games in Toronto as the Birds’ DH.
This is the most time that Jones has missed in the Orioles’ lineup since he’s been in Baltimore. Jones has said that he’ll remain out of the lineup until it no longer pains him to throw. Yesterday he suggested that might be on Friday when the Orioles return home to open up a three-game set with Cleveland. But if you’re an Orioles fan, should you be worried or concerned about this?
All injuries are concerning. However Adam Jones is the undisputed team leader, and his absence is probably felt more so
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than would be those of other players. Obviously his teammates have picked up the slack, specifically David Lough (Jones’ understudy in center field) – who hit a three-run homer last night at Fenway Park.
Jones and the Orioles are very confident that this won’t involve a DL stint. But…how reliable is that? I don’t mean that the O’s would lie about something like this, but the fact is that when it comes to medical issues we just don’t know. I can tell you from my own experiences that shoulder injuries can be painful. So…would a DL stint actually be a good thing for Jones?
Maybe, maybe not. If they put him on the DL, he’d be eligible to return on July 6th since it would be retroactive to Sunday, June 21st. After leaving Boston, the O’s will head home for three games with Cleveland, four with Texas, and then to Chicago for three with the ChiSox next weekend. If it’s somewhat of a given that Jones will be out of the lineup (according to him) for the remainder of the Boston series, he wouldn’t miss any division games if he hit the DL.
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In no way am I suggesting that he should go to the DL, or that the Orioles would be better served with him there. You want to avoid the DL at all costs. But if Jones finds out that he can’t play in on Friday, it’s something the Orioles would have to consider. The Birds are playing with what amounts to a 24-man roster while Jones is sitting. That can’t happen for too much longer before it takes a toll on the entire team.
As I said, the good news is that other guys are stepping up when needed. Manny Machado‘s bat has also stayed hot, among other guys. And David Lough has played a great center field for the O’s in Jones’ absence. But for the time being, Jones and Buck Showalter are toeing the line that he’ll be back no later than Friday.
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