MLB: Machado to make debut against Pirates tonight
BALTIMORE — Manny Machado will have to wait at least another day before making his season debut with the Baltimore Orioles.
Machado joined his teammates and was poised to be activated from the 15-day disabled list before rain postponed Tuesday night’s game against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The game has been rescheduled for Thursday night, previously a day off for both teams.
Machado hasn’t played for Baltimore since undergoing left
knee surgery last October. The 2013 All-Star third baseman won’t formally come off the DL until the next day the Orioles are to play a game, manager Buck Showalter said.
Rain is in the forecast today, too. Machado is ready to play, rain or shine.
“I’m here to play baseball,” he said, “If it is snow, if it is rain, if it is whatever.”
After a rehabilitation assignment that consisted of playing three games for Class A Frederick, Machado was convinced he’s ready to compete again at the major league level.
“The last couple days definitely helped,” he said. “I felt ready a couple days ago. ... It was just a matter of getting the repetitions. I feel good. That’s the main thing. I feel great. My body feels good, everything feels good. I’m just excited to be up here.”
The 21-year-old Machado hit .283 with 14 homers, 71 RBIs and 51 doubles last year, his first full season in the majors. He will fill the roster spot vacated by slugger Chris Davis, who went on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a strained left oblique.
Machado will also provide stability defensively next to fellow Gold Glove winner J.J. Hardy.
“We played 156, 157 games together on the left side of the infield last year, so it’s going to be nice to be looking over to my right and being pretty familiar with each other,” Hardy said.
“We’re all happy to a have him back.”
Machado insists there’s no play defensively that he would be reluctant to make.
“I’m ready to play baseball. I’m going to go out there and make whatever play comes my way,” he said. “I made a couple of nice plays in the lower levels, and I feel good defensively. I feel great (there). I’m not concerned about anything. I’m a baseball player, and I’ve been doing this my whole life. I’m just going to go out there, and whatever comes my way, just go out there and do it and play some baseball and have some fun at the same while I’m doing it.”