Surgery a possibility for Orioles closer Ray
Ray began to feel discomfort in the elbow Saturday, and was not available in a save situation Sunday. He has not pitched since Friday night in Oakland.
"[Trainer] Richie Bancells told me it's a three-week rehab and then a throwing program," interim manager Dave Trembley said.
The injury could ultimately require surgery, but the Orioles are not yet ready to consider that option.
"At this point you have luxury of time, you might as well take it. Inactivity is the first thing that you ought to do," said Andy MacPhail, president of baseball operations.
"In general I think you'll find this: We are pretty conservative. We will take the conservative course first and then if the evidence is such that we need to do something more drastic, then we'll do something more drastic," MacPhail added. "But there's no sense in going to Point Z right away."
Trembley said an examination determined that Ray has bone chips and inflammation in the elbow, but the pitcher said, "I'm not sure what the injury is. It just feels sore."
Ray tested the arm by tossing a ball around 100 feet Wednesday afternoon, but quickly ended the session.
"It wasn't completely pain-free, but it was for the most part a lot better," he said.
Ray is 5-6 with a 4.43 ERA and 16 saves. He had not allowed a run in his last six outings, all in July.
His spot on the roster was taken by reliever Cory Doyne, who was recalled from Triple-A Norfolk. Doyne, 0-1 with a 2.23 ERA in 42 appearances at Norfolk, appeared in one game earlier this season with Baltimore.
"Our concern is to get [Ray] back and do what's right for his best interests," Trembley said. "There are enough guys on this club that are professional enough that will try to do the best they can to pick it up."
Ray was disappointed to be headed to the DL, but realized there was really no other option.
"I think you have to consider I'm going out there and trying to help the team. I don't feel like I can do that," he said. "I probably could pitch tonight, but then I might be right back in the same situation I was Saturday and Sunday where I can't throw again."
Miguel Tejada played six innings for the Double-A Bowie Baysox on Wednesday, going 0-for-3 but reporting no pain in his left wrist. Tejada has been sidelined since June 22 with a broken bone near his left wrist. If the shortstop fares well in his second rehab assignment, Thursday night in Frederick, then he should come off the DL for Friday night's game against the New York Yankees. "If he gets through tomorrow like he did today, he certainly [will]," Trembley said.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press