Hays was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk on Sunday, Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports reports.
Hays was tearing it up this spring with a .351 average, five home runs, and 1.277 OPS over 12 games, but for one reason or another he will not break camp with the Orioles. Hays is one of Orioles' top prospects and has already made his big-league debut, so while he will not open the season with the big club, it might not be long before he earns a call-up, particularly if his hot spring carries over to the start of the minor-league season.
Hays went 2-for-3 with a double, home run and four RBI in Tuesday's spring game against the Yankees.
Hays started in right field and batted second as he is now 11-for-31 with four home runs and a 1.246 OPS in 10 games this spring. The 23-year-old is making quite the statement in spring training after missing the final few weeks of last season after undergoing surgery for a stress fracture in his ankle.
Hays was 2-for-4 with a double, home run and four RBI during Saturday's spring game against the Rays.
Hays got the starting nod in center field and batted leadoff for the Orioles as he is garnering an extensive look in spring training. The 23-year-old is 8-for-25 (.320) with three home runs over eight spring games.
Hays went 1-for-3 with a solo homer in Friday's game against the Yankees.
Hays struck out in his first two at-bats before leaving the yard for the first time this spring in his final trip to the plate. The 23-year-old is now 4-for-12 through four Grapefruit League games.
Hays recently noted that he doesn't expect to face any limitations in spring training coming off September ankle surgery, Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports reports.
Hays was cleared to resume a running program in late October and apparently hasn't hit any snags in his recovery, setting him up to report to camp at full strength. After making his MLB debut in September 2017, Hays was expected to establish himself as an everyday player for Baltimore last season, but that never came to fruition while he battled injuries and saw his performance take a step back at Double-A Bowie. He'll get the token opportunity to compete with DJ Stewart for a starting gig in the corner outfield during camp, but Hays will more than likely need some further polish in the high minors before receiving another look in the big leagues.
|10/1/2017 vs Tampa Bay|
|vs Tampa Bay||21||5||0||.227||.286||.238|
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