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Latest on Hardy's Playing Status
Tuesday, May 3
On Monday, ESPN's Jim Bowden reported Hardy is expected to be out six to eight weeks with the injury, which is lengthy and indicative of the severity considering the toughness he's shown in the past.
Hardy No Stranger to Injuries
Hardy spent time on the DL toward the beginning of each of the prior two seasons. He admitted this past October that he played the entire 2015 campaign with a torn labrum in his left shoulder—not to mention the other ailments he dealt with such as back spasms, a right groin strain and a sore oblique.
Unfortunately, the trend of sitting early on will continue in 2016, but it's better for Hardy and the club to get it out of the way early in the year if he must leave the lineup.
That doesn't mean Baltimore will find it easy to win without Hardy, though. The 33-year-old veteran is a key leader in the infield as a three-time Gold Glove Award winner who made only three errors in 114 games last season at short.
While his power at the plate has declined in recent years—he hit 77 homers in his first three seasons with the Orioles but has had only 19 since—Hardy is nevertheless going to be tough to replace in all areas.
Baltimore currently ranks 29th in quality starts, leaning more on its bullpen and batting order for a 14-10 record to date. The club needs its pitching staff to step up and make the defense's job easier while Hardy recovers.