Baltimore Orioles reliever Jason Grimsley, who has been on the disabled list all season after having elbow reconstruction surgery on Oct. 12, will rejoin the team on Saturday and may be ready to rejoin the bullpen in a month. The news came as quite a surprise to the Orioles, who did not expect to see Grimsley back this season.
"I don't think any of us were counting on him doing that this year," Manager Lee Mazzilli said.
It is certainly much too early to speculate on what role Grimsley may have in the bullpen, but Baltimore acquired the reliever from the Kansas City Royals on June 21 of last season to act as one of then-closer Jorge Julio's set-up men.
Grimsley had a 4.21 ERA with Baltimore in 41 games, but had pitched most of the season with discomfort in his right elbow. Tests afterward showed Grimsley had ligament damage. At this point, no Orioles team doctor or trainer has examined Grimsley. The Orioles have only spoken with Grimsley and Cincinnati Reds doctor Tim Kremchek, who performed the surgery.
"Right now we're going on what [Grimsley] told us," Orioles Executive Vice President Jim Beattie said. "He says he's throwing pretty hard."
Beattie said Grimsley will throw four or five bullpen sessions and the team would then decide whether to send him on a minor league rehabilitation assignment.
Ray Gets a Little Work
Mazzilli said he isn't concerned about getting regular work for reliever Chris Ray, who was called up from Class AA Bowie on Monday but had only pitched one inning before Friday's game. Part of the concern the Orioles faced by bringing up Ray -- considered one of the organization's best pitching prospects -- was that he wouldn't pitch enough innings. But Mazzilli said he won't hesitate to plug Ray into any situation. Ray retired the only batter he faced in the Orioles' 2-1 loss to the Rockies Friday night. . . .
Beattie said outfielder Luis Matos will likely be activated Monday, though there is a chance they could plug him into the lineup on Sunday to face left-hander Jeff Francis.