McKenna on hand in case of Orioles' playoff need - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Rich Dubroff

McKenna on hand in case of Orioles’ playoff need

Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan USA TODAY Sports

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BALTIMORE—The Orioles began their workouts for the Division Series that starts Saturday on Tuesday night after a day off.

There was some infield and batting practice, and Grayson Rodriguez threw two simulated innings from the mound.

The 28 players on the roster when the regular season ended on Sunday were there and four extra players joined the workouts —  relievers Bryan Baker and Mike Baumann, catcher Anthony Bemboom and outfielder Ryan McKenna.

The Orioles can carry only 26 players and don’t have to set their lineup until Saturday morning. Six players who attended the workout won’t be on the Division Series roster but will travel with the team in case of an injury. Rosters can be reset for the League Championship Series and the World Series.

Baker (46 games) and Baumann were (60) were with the Orioles for most of the season, and so was McKenna (88). None of the three were with the Orioles when they celebrated clinching a playoff spot on September 17th or the American League East on September 26th.

“Obviously, you want to be there with the team and celebrate what we’ve done all year,” McKenna said. “It was awesome to see. I was watching. I was keeping tabs. I was just enjoying from a distance.”

Bemboom, who played just six games, was with the roster mostly during the two stints James McCann spent on the 10-day injured list.

The four played for Norfolk’s Triple-A championship team. All but McKenna played in Saturday’s win over Oklahoma City that made the Tides the kings of Triple-A.

Even if McKenna isn’t activated for the postseason, he’ll have a good seat to watch the Orioles.

“Postseason baseball, as a lover of the game, is really awesome to see at a high level,” McKenna said. “Especially being part of a team, whether they activate me or not, I’m going to be rooting for the guys and doing everything I can, staying ready. When the time comes, if the time comes, I’ll be ready, trying to enjoy the experience as well.”

According to BetOnline.ag, the Orioles are 6/1 to win the World Series, behind Atlanta (3/1), Los Angeles (9/2) and Houston (5/1). Those teams won the last three World Series.

McKenna is convinced the Orioles can join them.

“Absolutely, we’ve proved it all year,” he said. “We know who we potentially are going to face. When you look back at how we played them in the past, we’re very much in the mix and very well could be a dominant force in the  postseason. We’re excited to see how it goes.”

The Orioles will have workouts each day through Friday. The five-day break is a day longer than July’s All-Star break.

“[Manager Brandon Hyde] was talking to the guys earlier today about not coming out flat and really taking these reps seriously,” McKenna said. “The days off that we get make sure we get our rest, but also stay ready for the first game on Saturday.

“I think the guys that have been here and are here are going to be ready for everything to come.”

Playoff odds and ends: The Orioles are 11/4 to win the American League, second to the Astros 21/10, according to BetOnline.ag. … Of the 12 postseason teams, three — the Texas Rangers, Tampa Bay Rays and Milwaukee Brewers — have yet to win a World Series. The Rangers played in the 2010 and 2011 World Series, the Rays lost in 2008 and 2020, and the Brewers in 1982.  Of the 10 other teams, the Orioles’ drought of 40 years since their last World Series title in 1983 is the longest. …Hyde celebrated his 50th birthday on Tuesday.

Wednesday workout open to fans: The Orioles’ workout on Wednesday is open to fans. The workout will run from 12:30 p.m to 2:30 p.m. Fans can obtain tickets at: Orioles.com/soakitin. Each email address can obtain up to four tickets. Children under 18 do not need a ticket, but must be accompanied by an adult. Select concession stands will be open and postseason merchandise will be on sale. Fans enter at Gate E.

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