Orioles announce worrisome John Means injury details, recall struggling ex-Royal

After four starts since returning from the IL, John Means is hurt again and could be out for a while.
Seattle Mariners v Baltimore Orioles
Seattle Mariners v Baltimore Orioles / Mitchell Layton/GettyImages

With Grayson Rodriguez returning from the injured list, the Baltimore Orioles' starting pitching staff was finally healthy, and the team's roster as a whole looked as complete as any in MLB. Unfortunately, one of the pitchers that had already missed some time earlier this season, John Means, got some bad news on Thursday.

Means missed most of the start of the 2024 season with a forearm injury, but it appeared as though he had dodged a major injury and the Orioles allowed him to rehab he way back to health. Once Means was activated from the IL on the same day Rodriguez went on the shelf, the coast appeared to be clear for him. Unfortunately, Means had to be pulled from Wednesday's game after feeling some arm soreness and experiencing a noticeable drop in velocity.

Upon being evaluated by the Orioles' medical staff, Means will indeed head to the injured list again with a forearm injury, and Baltimore will call upon Jonathan Heasley to take his place on the roster.

Orioles News: John Means to the Injured List again with a forearm strain, and his roster replacement is very questionable

Given that Means only managed to make four starts before his arm started acting up again, fans should probably expect that he will be out a lot longer this time. Hopefully he can avoid surgery, but a pair of forearm injuries in such a short period of time does not bode well. So far, the Orioles are calling the injury a strain, and one just hopes that it doesn't morph into a more serious issue than that. Means previously missed the bulk of the 2022 and 2023 seasons in the wake of Tommy John surgery, and will reach free agency after the 2024 campaign.

As for Heasley, Baltimore fans shouldn't get their hopes up. He was already on the 40-man roster, which makes the transaction an easy one logistically, but he has a career 5.67 ERA and his three appearances in the majors with the Orioles have been abysmal. That said, he does have an 0.45 ERA in seven appearances down at Triple-A, so maybe he has figured something out.

In the long-term, we can probably expect the Orioles to make a move to cover themselves for a while. Albert Suarez's place on the roster is definitely safe now, and we could see him making starts again. If Baltimore wants to keep Suarez in that swingman role, calling up top pitching prospect Cade Povich could very much be on the table.

More Orioles News from Birds Watcher