Manny Machado is playing like his usual self at Class A Advanced Frederick. It might not be long until he's doing the same back in Baltimore.
In the third game of his rehabilitation assignment Sunday, Machado went 4-for-4 with a pair of doubles, three runs scored, two RBIs and a walk in the Keys' 10-3 win over the Carolina Mudcats.
He's looking a lot like the player who made the American League All-Star team and won a Glove Glove at third base last season, according to Frederick's hitting coach Torre Tyson.
"Yeah, I'd say so," said Tyson, who also coaches third. "I had my arms up, trying to stop him at a double the first night, and he came sliding in for a triple. And he took off and stole kind of a meaningless base today just to see how it felt. He's definitely feeling good."
After undergoing knee surgery in October and participating in extended spring training earlier this year, Machado slotted in as designated hitter Friday and played third base over the weekend. In 12 at-bats, he has eight hits, including four doubles and a triple. He scored five runs and driven in two more with one walk and one strikeout.
"It's fun to just kind of watch how easy things are for him," Tyson said. "He's been testing out that wheel probably more than I would have liked, being the third-base coach there and holding my breath sometimes. But he says he's feeling good and we're definitely reaping the benefits down here."
Machado didn't see much action in the field Sunday, but Tyson noted he made several impressive plays at third base a night earlier. Whether it's hitting, fielding or running, Machado has so far given every indication that he's fully healthy.
Still just 21 years old, he is younger than almost every player on Frederick's roster. That hasn't prevented him from dispelling Major League wisdom, and Tyson said the other players have been all ears.
"This is only my second year with the Orioles, so I haven't gotten a chance to get to know him at all until the last couple days," said Tyson, who joined Baltimore before last season after filling various coaching roles in the Yankees organization. "I've been thoroughly impressed with just his maturity level and the knowledge that he's gained from the guys at the Major League level already with the Orioles."
Last season was Machado's first full slate in the Major Leagues. He posted a .283/.314/.432 slash line while leading the American League in doubles (51) and at-bats (667). The Orioles' No. 2 hitter finished with 14 home runs and 71 RBIs.
There's no doubt that Baltimore, which recently placed slugger Chris Davis on the 15-day disabled list because of a left oblique strain, is itching to once again benefit from Machado's services. At 12-12, the Orioles were in second place in the AL East through Sunday.
"He's using this as an opportunity to get himself right, to make sure that his timing is down and he's feeling healthy," Tyson said. "I think we're all using it as an opportunity to get better through him and kind of pick his brain and allow him to help these guys.
"We know the end goal is to get him back to Baltimore as quickly as possible and as healthy as possible."
Carolina first baseman Jerrud Sabourin also went 4-for-4 with a double and a run scored in his 2014 debut. The teams have split the first two contests of a four-game series.