O's add Washington to replace Davis

O's add Washington to replace Davis

CHICAGO -- The Orioles replaced one big first baseman with another big body Wednesday.

After putting Chris Davis on the 10-day disabled list with a Grade 1 right oblique strain, they replaced the 6-foot-3, 230-pound slugger with David Washington, a 26-year old rookie who's 6-5 and 260 pounds.

Prior to Wednesday's game against the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field, Washington said was anxious to make his Major League debut. He was placed right into the Orioles' starting lineup as the designated hitter.

Washington went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts, but the Orioles rallied to top the White Sox, 10-6.

"It's crazy," said Washington, who signed with Baltimore as a Minor League free agent after spending the previous eight seasons in the Cardinals' system. "My mind's going about a million miles per hour right now. I'm very excited."

Washington hit .291/.344/.517 with 10 home runs with 26 RBIs in 56 games with Triple-A Norfolk. He has 102 home runs and 342 RBIs in 641 career Minor League games.

"He was swinging the bat real well in Norfolk," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "We got to see him a lot in [Spring Training]. He's still a young guy. He's got a lot of life in his bat, and we'll see."

The Orioles will also wait to see about Davis' recovery timeline. After sustaining the injury Monday in the first game of the series, Davis flew back to Baltimore on Tuesday. He underwent an MRI, but Showalter said it's still too soon to predict how long the starting first baseman might be sidelined. His DL stint is retroactive to June 13.

"I know he had a lot of trouble sleeping [Tuesday]," Showalter said. "He was uncomfortable, so obviously he had an issue there. It'll probably be a few days for him to start doing any type of treatment, [and] I'm not really sure what that is. It's not like you can go out and work it out. You're not going to do anything that may set it back, so he's pretty sore."

As for his advice to Washington -- whose father, grandmother and aunt flew to Chicago to watch his debut -- Showalter said simplicity and pitch selection were keys to overcoming first-game jitters.

"Everybody's different," Showalter said. "One thing you do try to tell them is to not give the level too much credit. The biggest thing is trying to trust your stuff as a pitcher, and as a hitter, don't think you have to go faster. Your selectivity is so important up here. These [pitchers] find a weakness, and they're going to pound on it."

Worth noting

• Showalter didn't give specifics, but said outfielder Seth Smith is fighting through a nagging injury that is limiting his playing time.

"He's not 100 percent," Showalter said prior to the game Wednesday. "He couldn't play (Tuesday) night, and we'll see if he's available tonight in some capacity."

• Orioles first-base coach Wayne Kirby missed the game Wednesday to attend his daughter's high school graduation, so assistant hitting coach Howie Clark filled the vacancy.

Anthony Santander (right forearm strain) was transferred from the 10-day disabled list to the 60-day DL.

Brian Hedger is a contributor to MLB.com based in Chicago. He covered the Orioles on Wednesday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.