In a development that will be a surprise to everyone who's never followed baseball before, the Orioles have a number of players whose injury situations have now been revealed to be more serious than initially reported. The most concerning of these involves Kevin Gausman, who received a cortisone injection in his shoulder on Sunday.
At the time, the usual encouraging sounding quotes came from manager Buck Showalter, who said of the injection, "I don't know if it's a big concern," and also, "he'll be down for about three days before we pick back up again." Two days later, the line has suddenly changed. Now the question is instead whether or not Gausman will be ready in time to make a start during the first turn through the rotation. He may have to go on the disabled list.
This is not actually a surprise. This is the nature of things. Some small-sounding thing happens and sometimes it turns out to be much more serious, much like how the "routine spring soreness" of Matt Wieters has had him out of games for ten days and counting. The injury update on Wieters today is that he threw up to 90 feet on flat ground today. There was no indication of where this leaves him with regards to avoiding the DL for Opening Day.
Gausman is not the only one who's gotten a cortisone injection. Brian Matusz received one on Sunday as well after pitching the last inning of Sunday's tie against the Rays. Matusz is now said to be "in doubt" for Opening Day, which, much like the situation with Gausman, will throw wide open a spot on the team that seemed to have been locked down.
Another player who looks to be having problems is Jimmy Paredes, who reportedly took some dry swings today and continued to have wrist soreness, so he's getting shut down and will probably open the season on the disabled list.
The earliest date that can be used to put a player on the disabled list is March 25. If Gausman sticks to the current injury timetable - hoping to be back in the first or second week of the season - this could prove significant because it means the 15 day minimum DL stay doesn't have to take up 15 days of the regular season.
A player put on the DL on March 25 would be eligible to come off of the DL on April 11. That's only a week into the season, but it's long enough that there would need to be a replacement for Gausman the first turn through the rotation. The O's will need their fifth starter in their sixth game, which is on April 10.