Machado may return against Bucs or Twins

Machado may return against Bucs or Twins

BALTIMORE -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter said it's a possibility that third baseman Manny Machado joins the team mid-week, although it's equally possible the club waits until next weekend's series in Minnesota.

"That's in the realm of possibility, too," Showalter said. "Got a big realm."

Machado made his rehab debut for the Class A Advanced Frederick Keys on Friday night, hitting two doubles and a triple in four plate appearances as designated hitter. The All-Star also played Saturday afternoon and went 1-for-4 at third base.

The plan is for Machado to play another nine innings on Sunday and then either stay with Frederick or go to Triple-A Norfolk. Double-A Bowie is playing on the road next week.

"I wouldn't say anything is off the table right now," Showalter said of whether Machado could play in Tuesday's opener of a two-game series at home against Pittsburgh. "We will have a pretty good idea after tomorrow."

While the Orioles' infield has already taken a hit with Chris Davis' left oblique injury, Showalter said that situation will not change the organization's plans for Machado.

"That'd be a bad reason," Showalter said. "It's a baseball decision now, as much as physical. That's the way [head athletic trainer] Richie [Bancells] and him put it. When he's had enough at-bats to come up here. This will give [Machado] close to 40 now."

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.