Orioles closer Zach Britton ruptures Achilles during workout

Machado, who has primarily played third base, is also requesting to play short stop this season.

Orioles closer Zach Britton ruptured his Achilles during an offseason workout on Tuesday and will now be sidelined for at least six months. Expected to be out at least six months.

Speaking with Britton on Wednesday as he was still trying to wrap his head around the injury and its ramifications, he sounded like a player prepared to be released. Any sort of setback could push his return into July or August, with the worst case scenario being that he does not make it back at all for the 2018 season. He battled forearm issues through much of the season and it seemed to drastically affect his control.

The left-handed reliever finished 2017 with a 2.89 ERA after a MVP-caliber 2016 season that featured a 0.54 ERA and 47 saves.

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At 29 years old, Britton still is in his prime, especially for a closer.

Unfortunately for Britton his 2017 campaign was cut short due to injury. He was set to earn more than $12 million in arbitration. The Orioles are well aware of this and are now fielding trade offers for the young superstar. If the Orioles did have the depth to withstand a significant injury, it was in their deep, late-inning bullpen arsenal. Moments after reports would surface suggesting they wouldn't be fielding anymore offers on Manny Machado, this news broke. Those two premium talents alone could bring in packages that give Baltimore a massive head start towards rebuilding the franchise.

Britton will be eligible for free agency after the 2018 season. Hopefully for all involved Britton can return at the 6-month mark, as originally prognosticated, and show a glimpse of his 2016 standout performance.

Britton's injury causes two blows to the Orioles future.


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