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Orioles officially place Davis on 15-day DL

First baseman dealing with left oblique strain sustained on Friday

Special to

BALTIMORE -- The Orioles on Sunday officially placed first baseman Chris Davis on the 15-day disabled list with a left oblique strain.

The move is retroactive to Saturday. Davis has a .250 average with two homers and 13 RBIs in 22 games this season. He apparently sustained the injury in Friday's 5-0 loss to the Royals in the opener of a three-game series.

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"It's kind of crazy, because I don't feel terrible," said Davis, who exited Friday's game after four innings and was optimistic he'd avoid the DL. "I've never had anything like this before. I figured it would just be a few days and then we'd forget about it."

Orioles manager Buck Showalter said Davis will either head to the club's Spring Training complex in Sarasota, Fla., on the coming road trip or remain in Baltimore to work with a trainer. Plus, Davis' wife is eight months pregnant, so that also could factor into a decision.

Showalter said there are three levels to this type of injury and that the time table for Davis' return would depend on where they "caught" the injury. The skipper said Davis' problems are not at the highest level, but to assume the first baseman will return as soon the DL stay is over might not be a safe bet.

"I'm not expecting it; it wouldn't be very smart to think it's a given," Showalter said. "Chris told me yesterday, 'I've always been a very fast healer.' We'll see, but the normal time on these things is more than the DL period, but we'll see."

The Orioles played Sunday's game with 24 available players. But Showalter said they will have the full 25 for Tuesday's game with the Pirates, plus pitcher Troy Patton is able to return on Wednesday, so the team has options.

The main question is who plays first base in Davis' absence. Outfielder Nick Markakis started there on Saturday night and was back there for Sunday's rubber game against the Royals. Markakis delivered two RBI singles, including the game-winner in Saturday's 3-2 walk-off win in 10 innings.

Ryan Flaherty took over at first base when Davis exited early in Friday's game against the Royals.

Jeff Seidel is a contributor to

Baltimore Orioles, Chris Davis