The Chris Davis era in Baltimore is nearing the end.
Davis has been shut down this season after undergoing arthroscopic hip surgery.
That means there is one year left on his record $161 million deal, which includes deferred payments through 2037.
Davis has never lived up to the expectations and has dealt with myriad injuries since signing the lofty contract. Now, he should be ready for his last spring training with the team after rehabbing his left hip.
“I think it’s safe to say that veteran baseball players or any baseball players, they deal with things and they play through things over a course of seasons and years, and ultimately you get to a point where you come to the conclusion that something needs to be done about it,” Orioles general manager Mike Elias said. “We weren’t able to see him in much spring training action. He’s been dealing with this since then and it was the conclusion of the medical people involved and Chris that he wanted to get this fixed once he had the proper diagnosis.”
Davis was one of MLB’s productive hitters when he signed that huge deal after the 2015 season, slashing .262/.361/.562 with a league-leading 47 home runs and 117 RBIs in 2015.
After that, his production went into a steady decline. Davis has batted .196/.291/.379 with 92 homers and 231 RBIs from 2016-2020.
Last year, he battled knee injuries and went 6-for-52 with just one RBI in 52 at-bats. This spring, Davis was told he would have to fight for his at-bats at first base with Trey Mancini and Ryan Mountcastle.
Now, he’ll have one more opportunity to salvage something with the Orioles.
“I’m sure that he’s going to work his butt off this offseason,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “I just don’t know much about the surgery, honestly. I know it’s going to take him throughout this season, but I expect him to be ready to go next spring and looking forward to seeing him.”
Harvey On The Mend
Hunter Harvey could return from the injury list this season.
The Orioles reliever is on the 60-day injured list with a strained oblique suffered in spring training, but he has been throwing at the team’s minor-league facility. Harvey, who was selected by the Orioles in the first round (No. 22 overall) of the 2013 MLB Draft, has been hampered with injuries throughout his career.
“He’s throwing in simulated games, his velocity is there,” Elias said. “The innings that he’s thrown down there in Sarasota [have] gone well so far. He’s only thrown a couple so far and we’ve got to have several outings before he’s deemed fully ready and built up and all those boxes have been checked from a rehab status.”
Harvey was shut down in July 2014 due to a flexor mass strain, then again in May 2015 because of elbow tightness. He never appeared in a game for any of Orioles affiliate in 2015. He underwent Tommy John surgery the following year, ending another season.
Harvey went 0-1 with 0.96 ERA with 30 strikeouts in 18.2 innings for the Gulf Coast Orioles, Aberdeen and Delmarva in 2017. Harvey was limited by shoulder injuries in 2018, throwing just 32.1 innings (nine starts) for Bowie. He went 1-2 with a 5.57 ERA during that stretch. He was called up to the 25-man roster in April but never made an appearance.
Harvey finally made his MLB debut on Aug. 17, 2019 and made an immediate impact in the bullpen. He appeared in seven games (6.1 innings) and allowed just one run and three hits with 11 strikeouts and one walk. Harvey posted a 1.42 ERA and 1.11 WHIP. However, Harvey was shut down to limit his innings.
Last season, he went 0-2 with a 4.15 ERA in 10 appearances (8.2 innings).
The hope is back in the mix this season.
“At this point, I still think we’re projecting him to be eligible to come off the 60-day IL if not exactly 60 days after his placement, then a few days thereafter assuming things continue to go smoothly,” Elias said.
Another Setback For Martin
Richie Martin, a Rule 5 pick from the Oakland Athletics prior to the 2019 season, was placed on the injured list for Triple-A Norfolk with a fractured bone in his left wrist.
Martin, normally a utility infielder, was injured playing center field for Tides. He collided with the wall in trying to catch a fly ball.
The injuries are becoming a concern for Martin, who missed all of the shortened 2020 season with a broken right wrist and suffered a broken left hamate bone in winter ball this past offseason.
“Really unfortunate news we got with Richie,” Elias said. “It still is a big year for him, just because he missed so much time last year getting hurt in spring training 2.0 and missing a lot of at-bats and innings played defensively last year.
“And we were hoping that he’d get a nice year of development and get a lot of innings played, catch up on a bunch of at-bats. And to see him have to miss some time, it’s disappointing.”
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