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It’s been one year since Brian Roberts played for the Orioles

May 17, 2012, 2:50 PM EDT

Boston Red Sox v Baltimore Orioles Getty Images

Yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of Brian Roberts‘ last game action for the Orioles and concussions have limited the former All-Star second baseman to just 98 total games since the beginning of 2010.

Roberts spoke to Eduardo Encina of the Baltimore Sun about his year on the sidelines, calling it “extremely hard and very frustrating at times, but at the same time I’m very grateful for where I am today.”

During the past week he’s been fielding ground balls and even diving to make plays, which Roberts called “a big hurdle physically as well as mentally.”

As for when he might actually return to the Orioles’ lineup, there’s still no timetable but Roberts indicated that the team may soon begin talking about a minor-league rehab schedule. That may not sound like a ton of progress, but at this point Roberts is simply trying to save his career at age 34 and in the third season of a four-year, $40 million contract.

  1. rockthered1286 - May 17, 2012 at 3:09 PM

    While Boston has received the brunt of the curse of Robert Andino, B-Rob’s slow progression back to health is also a casualty of the Andino curse.

    Sad thing is I’m not so sure O’s fans WANT B-Rob back. Don’t get me wrong, great player but so is Robby Andino and I’m feeling better about a healthy young 2B than a guy who’s been out for over a year and isn’t in the flow of the game. Potentially we could shift Andino to third I suppose but I’m skeptical…

    • dowhatifeellike - May 17, 2012 at 3:19 PM

      I’m on the fence about it. Roberts was certainly great before the concussion problems, but Andino is doing well this year. I think Roberts should spend the rest of the year on rehab assignments (can they do that?) and then compete for the job next spring.

      • DJ MC - May 17, 2012 at 3:40 PM

        Unless he is optioned to the minors (and he would have the right to refuse any such move) he can only stay on a rehab assignment for a certain time–a month, I think. Even so, because of his veteran status I can’t see the Orioles leaving him down for near that long, even if I expect he would stay down for more than two weeks.

  2. DJ MC - May 17, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    The weird thing with the Roberts situation is the Orioles’ steadfast refusal to transfer him to the 60-day disabled list, even with all of the necessary moves made over the past week. We are two weeks from the end of May, and a week-and-a-half from the official 60-day mark (March 28, I believe).

    If he spends any less than two weeks at various affiliates in his rehab stint after a full year off and with all of the potential issues he showed over that time, I will be floored. Especially since, as mentioned, Robert Andino is playing very well right now.

    When Roberts comes back, he may not even be playing at second base.

    • randomdigits - May 17, 2012 at 6:36 PM

      And their refusal just led to Antonelli being lost to the Yankees.

      • borninfellspoint - May 18, 2012 at 9:05 AM

        Antonelli is no great loss.

  3. Loose Changeup - May 17, 2012 at 4:57 PM

    For those people who don’t think the O’s could use BRob’s bat in the lineup, check out the Nick Johnson and Bill Hall platoon at DH

    • dowhatifeellike - May 17, 2012 at 5:04 PM

      I was just thinking about that. When was the last time a DH was a leadoff hitter?

      • Loose Changeup - May 17, 2012 at 7:54 PM

        Not sure, but it’s something I could see Buck doing.

  4. watermelon1 - May 17, 2012 at 6:24 PM

    The Orioles are playing great, and I’m sure confidence was a big part of it so the longer they keep it going the better they will probably get.

    But I said about 3 years ago that they should trade Roberts and Markakis… inarguably the two biggest fan-favorites of the Orioles at that time.

    Just imagine how much better they could be right now if they had followed my advice.

    And if the Orioles keep winning this year, they might finally be able to land that big-name free agent next offseason. Perhaps the owner(however dumb he may be) might finally get one “right” and finally be willing to ante up.

    Then again, maybe they don’t want to mess up the good thing they have going right now.

    Either way, we’re talking about baseball in Baltimore. That’s a nice change of pace from the last 14 years.

  5. scoutsaysweitersisabust - May 17, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    The O’s would love Roberts to come back. While the DH situation is more a bi-product of the Reynolds/Reimold injuries, he is one of the true veteran leaders on the team. He comes with near flawless defense, the ability to steal second and third, one of the best OBP on the team. He’s lead or nearly lead the league in doubles in several seasons and has some pretty impressive power for a switch hitting leadoff guy. In addition, he’s very popular with the fans, the ladies especially. (At the end of the day, he sells a lot of tickets, and that counts for something.) I for one, really hope he returns, I was a fan of his back when they were leaning towards Jerry Hairston Jr. and I really hope he is able to return for a few good seasons before he eventually retires. I said the same thing when Mariano Rivera got hurt. No one should go out that way. While I do not underestimate the impact of Robert Andino who really stepped up and shined, I would rather have the problem of figuring out how to get them both onto the field.

    • dowhatifeellike - May 17, 2012 at 7:05 PM

      I just worry that he won’t produce like he used to. It’ll probably take the rest of the season just to get him back into form.

      • borninfellspoint - May 18, 2012 at 9:09 AM

        well said.

  6. bmorelikeme - May 18, 2012 at 9:40 AM

    At this point, Bobby Andino has earned the right to play everyday, but theres no doubt a healthy Roberts would benefit this team. If he can be 75% of the player he was 2 years ago he can still give us a better leadoff bat then we’ve had.

    Also, on an unrelated note, I really hope B-Rob is spending an hour a day teaching Xavier Avery the finer points of base stealing. I remember reading somewhere in spring training that he was taking to the role of teacher, but lets hope that continued.

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