J.J. Hardy has been out since April 10 with a strained oblique muscle, but Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun reports that the Orioles’ shortstop is expected to come off the disabled list and rejoin the lineup for tonight’s game.
Hardy went 2-for-9 with three walks in three games rehabbing at Triple-A and the Orioles decided there was no use in asking him to play a fourth game yesterday, which is presumably a good sign.
Injuries are the primary reason why the Twins traded Hardy to the Orioles in the first place, but when healthy he’s an elite defensive shortstop with an above-average bat for the position. However, the Orioles haven’t missed him a whole lot thanks to Robert Andino uncharacteristically posting a .390 on-base percentage in his absence.
MLB.com’s Mark Bowman confirms a report from Daniel Álvarez Montes of EVTV Miami that the Braves are calling up outfield prospect Ronald Acuña from Triple-A Gwinnett.
The move is obviously much anticipated and expected, as Acuña is considered the top prospect in baseball among those who hadn’t been called up to the majors yet. Acuña has had a slow start with Gwinnett, as he’s batting only .215/.301/.277 in 73 plate appearances. However, he has turned things around somewhat in recent days, batting .379 with a double and a homer since April 17.
Acuña should be in Wednesday’s starting lineup against the Reds and he should be a lineup regular going forward. The expectations are high for Acuña, who signed with the Braves as an international free agent in July 2014.