Baltimore Orioles star Manny Machado could return to the team's lineup as soon as next weekend, the Baltimore Sun's Eduardo Encina reported Thursday. The Orioles are targeting next weekend's three-game set on the road against the Minnesota Twins as the third baseman's return date, according to the report.
The plan is still tentative, as the Orioles want to see how the 21-year-old Machado responds to playing in three games this weekend with High-A Frederick. If all goes well, he will likely move up to play with the Orioles' Double-A or Triple-A affiliates before returning to the Orioles.
Machado is still recovering from offseason knee surgery. He experienced a setback this spring after originally targeting Opening Day for his return. Machado hit .283 with 14 homers and 71 RBI last season, his second in the major leagues. He led the American League with 51 doubles last season. VERDUCCI: Second pine tar incident embarrassing for Yankees, Pineda