Goodbye Mr. Jones
The Orioles are leaving open the possibility of Adam Jones returning from his sprained left ankle before the end of the season, but that's probably a longshot. As Orioles beat guy Jeff Zrebiec pointed out when he appeared with me on Sportsline tonight on WBAL Radio, there isn't anywhere for Jones to rehab late in September and there really isn't any compelling reason for him to come back for the last five or 10 games of the regular season.
The O's can use his playing time to get even more of a look at Felix Pie, who continues to swing one of the hottest bats on the team. Pie has come on strong in the power department the past three weeks, hitting more home runs in his last 51 at-bats (6) than he did in nearly 400 previous major league at-bats (5). He is hitting .318 since his average dipped to .158 way back on May 6.
Pie probably would have played a lot anyway, since the O's are auditioning Luke Scott at first base and need to get Nolan Reimold DH at-bats to spare his sore Achilles, so Jones' absense probably will also mean more playing time for Jeff Fiorentino. I think Zrebiec was right tonight when he speculated that Andy MacPhail may be regretting the deal that shed minor league outfielder Joey Gathright.