Spring training is nearly under way and players are trickling in to the Orioles camp. With that comes the usual slew of injury updates. The Orioles have a couple of players who are on their way back from major injuries. News is always good with injury recovery until it's suddenly bad. The good news is that there's no bad news yet for Dylan Bundy and Nolan Reimold.
Bundy's rehab is progressing according to plan:
Bundy threw from 120 ft today and will do the same tmrw. Target for a full mound is March 30 or 31 the way it's mapped out now.— Brittany Ghiroli (@Britt_Ghiroli) February 13, 2014
He told reporters that he is throwing pain-free at about 75% effort level and next week he'll be moving back to 150 feet. He's previously stated that he hopes to be pitching by the one-year anniversary date of his Tommy John surgery, June 27. That will likely be the beginning of a low-minors rehab stint.
If he can get back to the form that he showed before his injury, he could find his way into the big league rotation in 2015. It seems like he won't be contributing much to the 2014 Orioles, though.
Reimold is a player who's always battled injuries and he had his last two seasons end early due to surgery on his neck. Parts of his spine are actually fused together. He seemed upbeat at the recent Orioles FanFest - then again, so does everyone.
Nolan Reimold still expects to be ready for the 1st exhibition game. He's full-go in camp #orioles— Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) February 13, 2014
Everything will be on schedule until it isn't, but at least for now it's on schedule. Reimold's had an up-and-down big league career, with more down than up thanks to his injuries. It's a big if as to whether he'll be able to be healthy enough to contribute to the team, but if he does somehow pull that together, that's a hole the Orioles have filled that no one expected them to fill.
It's been five years now since Reimold's rookie season, in which he batted .279/.365/.466 over 104 games. There's always hope that he will be able to get back to something close to that form. He's 30 now, past the usual prime years, and so long removed from that one successful and healthy season that it's hard to count on him for much.
This is probably the last chance for Reimold to show the Orioles what he has, but so far all seems to be going well in being healthy enough to put his best foot forward. That a healthy Reimold can be a big part of the Orioles is not something that's guaranteed. So far it's looking like he'll be able to give it his best.
The first workout for pitchers and catchers will be held on Friday, with position players having until Wednesday to report for the first full squad workout. Manager Buck Showalter told reporters that it's the largest number of players reporting early he's seen in all of his years in baseball, which sounds nice and probably doesn't mean a thing.