The expanded rosters of September cant come soon enough for the Orioles.
They have to make do for another couple of weeks, and that means going short on the bench three position players in order to accommodate a pitching situation that remains very much in flux.
"I'd like to have the extra position player and the extra player, but they have to go to 26-player rosters to do it," manager Buck Showalter said Sunday, according to MLB.com. "It's what's best for our team right now."
Steve Johnson, whos been up and down so quickly a few times this season that the Orioles should install a turnstile in front of his locker, has been kept around as long-man insurance, taking a roster spot that might otherwise be occupied by a utilityman. But whats ahead? Even Showalter doesnt seem quite sure.
"It's kind of wait until the smoke clears a little bit after Wednesday, probably, and we will see what's best for us and Steve, Showalter said. It's one and the same. He will stay active. We will keep him active. Maybe not always in the game, but keep the ball in his hand. He's in a good place right now. We want to keep that."
After the Orioles have an open date on Thursday, they play 17 straight days. After eight of those games, the rosters expand from 25 to 40 on Sept. 1.
Manny Machado could very well be playing in his final game in an Orioles uniform Tuesday night when he takes the field for the 89th Midsummer Classic at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C.
According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Dodgers are now in the driver's seat as a favorite to land the All-Star shortstop.
Machado, 26, has gone back and forth on what he does and does not know as front office deals develop and speculation continues to grow. One thing he has made clear is that the rumors have not detracted from his enjoyment of being an All-Star.
Machado is signed through the end of the season, but the Orioles intend to deal him before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
For the latest news and conversation surrounding Machado's status and the Orioles, follow along on Twitter.
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When Manny Machado returns from the 2018 MLB All-Star Break, he will not be donning a Baltimore Orioles uniform.
The All-Star shortstop is expected to be traded from Baltimore to the Los Angeles Dodgers, barring any last-minute changes, according to multiple media reports.
That being said, the Machado trade talks remain fluid and both the Phillies and Brewers are still trying to work a trade for the 26-year-old third baseman, according to Jon Heyman. The Diamondbacks are also reportedly trying to lure the four-time All-Star to the desert, while the Yankees decided to pull out of the Machado sweepstakes just prior to the All-Star festivities in Washington, D.C.
While the details of the trade have yet to be revealed, the Dodgers will reportedly include top outfield prospect Yusniel Diaz in the Machado trade, according to Heyman.
According to Jim Bowden, when regular-season play returns, Machado will be in the National League, although which team he plays for is still up in the air.
With the Orioles sitting a historically awful 39.5 games out of first place at the All-Star Break, trading Machado is the first major step toward a complete overhaul. The Orioles drafted Machado out of Brito High School in Miami, Fla., with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2010 MLB Draft. Since then, Machado has drawn comparisons to iconic third basemen Brooks Robinson and Alex Rodriguez, despite being moved to shortstop full-time this past season, and is widely considered one of the three best position players in professional baseball.
Machado is currently batting .315 with 24 home runs and 65 RBIs.
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