The Double-A Bowie Baysox tweeted their lineup for tonight's game against Reading at Prince George's County Stadium, and it included Manny Machado at third base for the first time in his professional career.
Brian Roberts has returned to Bowie to continue his rehab assignment, and he's starting at second base. Jonathan Schoop, who had been replacing Roberts at second, is starting at shortstop.
Machado, the Orioles' top position prospect, is batting .250/.349/.375 with 13 doubles, two triples, two homers, 17 RBIs and 18 runs scored in 52 games. He's drawn 25 walks and struck out 42 times in 184 at-bats. He's also committed 12 errors in 50 games at shortstop.
Machado has played shortstop in 149 of his 151 minor league games. He's twice served as the designated hitter.
Today's move to third could be temporary. It could last one game, or until Roberts reports to Triple-A Norfolk to finish up his assignment. Macahdo is still viewed within the organization as the shortstop of the future, but tonight's start at third base is certain to create a buzz, considering the defensive issues plaguing the Orioles at the corner infield positions.
Update: I'm told that Machado could remain at third base through the weekend, but it's nothing major. He's been taking grounders at third and the Orioles want to evaluate him. They also want Schoop to get some starts at shortstop.
This also is a way to get Roberts, Schoop and Machado in the lineup at the same time.
Manager Buck Showalter is aware of Machado's current move to third. It's been discussed within the organization.