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Brian Roberts returning to Orioles after 13-month absence

Jun 12, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

brian roberts reuters wide Getty Images

Brian Roberts hasn’t played a major-league game in 13 months because of multiple concussions and numerous setbacks in his long road to recovery, but the former All-Star second baseman will be in the Orioles’ lineup tonight for the first time since May 16, 2011.

After such a long layoff at age 34 his ability level is anyone’s guess at this point, but before his career was derailed Roberts was consistently one of the best all-around second basemen in the league and posted an on-base percentage above .340 with at least 25 steals every year from 2004-2010.

Roberts’ absence created an opportunity for Robert Andino to take over as the Orioles’ starting second baseman and despite some brief flashes of improved play last season he’s mostly been the light-hitting, utility man-caliber player his modest track record predicted. Andino has hit .256 with a .656 OPS in 197 games since the beginning of last season, producing an OPS more than 100 points below Roberts’ career mark.

And regardless of how Roberts looks in his first game action in 13 months and no matter if he’s an upgrade over Andino or not, it’ll be great to see him back in the lineup after concussions threatened to ruin his career.

  1. bmorelikeme - Jun 12, 2012 at 11:26 AM

    If he can give this team a .325ish OBP at the top of the lineup and still capture a pitchers attention when on the basepaths, that’s still a huge boost for this lineup. The O’s can use all the reinforcements they can get at this point.

  2. dowhatifeellike - Jun 12, 2012 at 11:30 AM

    He hit well during his rehab assignment. I’m sure he’s just itching to get back.

  3. sophiethegreatdane - Jun 12, 2012 at 3:10 PM

    I always enjoyed BRob; he played the game all-out. He was a doubles-making machine a few years ago before the back injury and concussions, and if he can be 70% of that player now, I’ll take that.

  4. timpaz - Jun 12, 2012 at 8:24 PM

    Good Luck to you in your comeback.

  5. kp33 - Jun 13, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    Welcome back man

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