Adding strength to the lineup: O’s activate Ryan Mountcastle from IL, option Ryan McKenna to AAA.

The Baltimore Orioles are set to reinstate first basemen Ryan Mountcastle from the 10-day injured list today. Mountcastle was placed on IL on September 22nd after dealing with “left-shoulder discomfort” (retroactive to 9/17). Rookie slugger Heston Kjerstad has been in the DH spot in Mountcastle’s place, batting .227 with 2 home runs and 2 RBI.

Per Roch Kutbako, Mountcastle will be in the lineup to face Chris Sale tomorrow against Boston. In 13 at-bats against Sale, Mountcastle has gone 3-13 (.231 avg) with 2 home runs and 4 RBI. Unlike Mountcastle, the O’s have had Chris Sale’s number in 2023. In three appearances against Baltimore this season, Sale is 0-2 with an ERA of 13.50. His first start came on April 1st in which he went 3 innings giving up 7 hits, 7 runs, 2 walks and 3 home runs.

Sale faced the Orioles again eight days later, and it wasn’t much better. In 5 innings he surrendered 5 hits, 5 runs and 1 walk. In his third start on September 9th Sale gave up 6 hits and 6 runs in just 4 innings of work.

Adding Mountcastle is a massive boost to an already strong lineup. With him back, they can move O’Hearn back to the DH spot and bring in Westburg/Frazier to play second. The Orioles have a chance to clinch the division before Mountcastle’s return, as they need to beat the Nationals tonight (6:35 p.m.), and the Red Sox need to beat the Rays (6:10 p.m.).

All in all, the Orioles are ecstatic to bring back their star first basemen for an important 4-game series against the Red Sox. After the Thursday-Sunday series concludes, it will be full steam ahead to the postseason. Oh, and one more thing: win it for Brooks.

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