PHILADELPHIA — The Orioles roster looks to be just about set — depending of course on what happens with outfielder Hyun Soo Kim.
The Korean outfielder is with the Orioles at Citizens Bank Park tonight for the spring’s final exhibition game against the Philadelphia Phillies.
He’s not starting, but the sense is he’ll get an at-bat or two tonight – his first in roughly a week. Orioles manager Buck Showalter said today that if Kim does stay with the team for Monday’s opener at Camden Yards he needs to have had some recent at-bats.
The dilemma here has already been well-documented. Kim signed a two-year $7 million deal with the Orioles this winter. That deal included a provision allowing him to reject an assignment to the minors. Kim began the spring hitless in his first 23 at-bats and had eight hits – all singles – in 44 at-bats in big league camp.
So the Orioles want him to go to Triple-A and keep trying to get his swing back. Kim, one of Korea’s best hitters, wants to stay in the majors and figure things out.
Take away the Kim situation, and the roster looks pretty set, especially now that relievers Zach Phillips and Chaz Roe and have been sent to Triple-A.
Vance Worley pitches today and he has made this club – likely in the bullpen. The other pitchers will be: Zach Britton, Darren O’Day, Brad Brach, Mychal Givens, Dylan Bundy, T.J. McFarland and Tyler Wilson, who probably will be the fifth starter April 10, but will begin the year in the bullpen.
The starting rotation is Chris Tillman, Yovani Gallardo, Ubaldo Jimenez and Mike Wright.
Lefty reliever Brian Matusz (lower back), who walked three but didn’t allow a hit and struck out one batter in 1 2/3 innings Friday in a Triple-A intrasquad game, likely will begin the year on the disabled list. So will Kevin Gausman (shoulder), who threw 25-30 pitches from a mound today in Sarasota. He is in line to rejoin the Orioles to start around April 19.
The remaining offensive question is Kim or veteran infielder Paul Janish.
Here are the 12 offensive players that will be on the Opening Day roster, barring a major change: Matt Wieters, Caleb Joseph, Chris Davis, Jonathan Schoop, J.J. Hardy, Manny Machado, Pedro Alvarez, Ryan Flaherty, Mark Trumbo, Joey Rickard, Adam Jones and Nolan Reimold.