Orioles place ace Means on injured list with shoulder strain

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BALTIMORE (AP) — The Baltimore Orioles placed John Means on the 10-day injured list with a left shoulder strain Sunday, a day after the team’s ace departed in the first inning after facing just five batters.

Means (4-2), who pitched a no-hitter at Seattle on May 5, ranks fourth in the American League in ERA (2.28), seventh in innings pitched (71) and tied for 10th in strikeouts (69). He underwent an MRI exam Sunday morning, though the Orioles didn’t have the results when they placed the southpaw on the injured list.

“We’re going to side with caution and see what the results say,” manager Brandon Hyde said.

Means allowed two solo home runs while recording just two outs in Saturday’s 10-4 loss to the Cleveland Indians. After yielding Eddie Rosario’s two-out single, pitching coach Chris Holt went to the mound. Hyde and head athletic trainer Brian Ebel soon followed, and Means departed.

Means said he had similar experiences earlier in his major league career but had avoided shoulder fatigue until after games this season. That changed Saturday, when he felt it during warmups and then had issues when he was extending to release his pitches.

“It’s not major,” Means said Saturday. “It’s nothing serious. It’s more annoying than anything. I’m going to try and flush it out right now and try to attack some weak areas that are there.”

Baltimore recalled lefty Zac Lowther from Triple-A Norfolk to take Means’ spot on the roster. Lowther is 0-1 with an 18.90 ERA in two appearances with the Orioles this year.

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Patrick Stevens, The Associated Press

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