MASH Report (5/7/15)

Stephen Strasburg was removed from his last game with shoulder irritation.

“As [Strasburg] finishes pitches, it grabs him every once in a while. Tonight it got a little bit worse,” Williams said. “He said he feels like there is a rib out, like an alignment issue. We didn’t want to take a chance and have him change mechanics and hurt something.”

It appeared that something was wrong with Strasburg from the outset. In the top of the second, with two outs and the Marlins leading, 2-0, Williams, pitching coach Steve McCatty and athletic trainer Lee Kuntz went to the mound to check on Strasburg. But he stayed in the game until right-hander Doug Fistercame in as a pinch-hitter in the third inning. Fister singled to right field in his lone at-bat.

There was no signs of a velocity decline. I looked for possible injury factors and didn’t find any. Even without any glaring red flags, I have my concerns about his health. In the 2013 Hardball Times Annual, I found hard throwers had major arm injuries between 400 and 900 innings after Tommy John surgery. Strasburg right now is at 633 IP.

Alex Cobb is deciding on his next action because of a torn elbow.

Rays officials will meet today with RHP Alex Cobb to discuss plans for him to try pitching with a par-tial tear in his elbow ligament.

Cobb received a PRP injection from Dr. James Andrews after getting the diagnosis. Under the platelet-rich plasma therapy protocol, Cobb is expected to rest for a week, then spend a second week limited to light throwing, so it could be close to a month before they get a sense of if, or how much, it has helped.

Cobb could elect at any point to go ahead and have Tommy John surgery, which would sideline him for most, and possibly all, of the 2016 season.

It seems like we will know more about which route he will take in his rehab process in a day or two.

Andrew Lambo was placed on the DL with plantar fasciitis.

Lambo, who’s gone 1-for-25 at the plate this season, was placed on the 15-day DL, retroac-tive to Monday. Lambo said the injury has actually been bothering him since mid-March, but it just recently reached a point where it affected his workouts and performance.

George Springer is on the 7-day DL with brain damage. Ultimate Astros looked at the brain damage concussion rules and had a nice Q&A with neuropsychological expert Dr. Ken Podell.

Compared to other sports, in your research and experience, how often do you deal with baseball con-cussions?

Statistically, baseball has a lower rate of concussion than other professional sports such as football, ice hockey, or soccer. One study found 33 concussion from 2001-2010 (catchers have the highest rate and so do umpires!!). However, I suspect that is low and that there will be a higher rate when data from 2010-2014 is looked. This is what has been found in the NFL and NHL, which we believe is due to the strict policies, better awareness, better diagnostic criteria and tools. But it is still much lower than hockey and football.

Finally, this subject, Julien Assouline at has created a concussion database.

• As expected sometime during the season, Brandon Morrow is finally headed back to the DL with inflammation in his shoulder.

Devin Mesoraco’s hip will need surgery, but we have no idea when he will have the operation performed.

Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco is still unable to test his injured left hip by squatting, which continues to limit him to pinch-hitting duty. Mesoraco acknowledged on Tuesday that he will likely need surgery at some point to repair the impingement that gives him discomfort.

But not just yet. Mesoraco and the club are trying all possible avenues of treatment first.
“It’s something that down the line, hopefully, is probably going to have to get fixed,” Mesoraco said. “At this point, it’s not an option because of how much of the season we have left. At some point, it’s probably going to come into the picture.”

Jayson Werth is also not at 100% from his recent shoulder surgery.

But on Wednesday, as Werth was out of the lineup again, Williams explained that Werth, who is hitting .176, is not playing again because, in fact, his surgically-repaired right shoulder is “cranky” and “sore.”

“It’s part of the progression,” Williams said. “It’s going to be cranky from time to time. You know, surgery five months ago. It’s part of the rehab process. You get through stuff like this over time. So it’s a little cranky. With the off day [Thursday], this is an opportunity to let it calm down as much as possible.”

Austin Jackson is headed to the DL with a sprained ankle. It looks like he will only miss the required 15 days.

Oswaldo Arcia looks like he will also just miss the minimum time with his DL trip for a strained hip.

J.J. Hardy may join the Orioles today.

• The Twin placed Eduardo Nunez on the DL with a strained oblique.

• The Pirates minor league system took a hit with pitchers Tyler Glasnow (ankle) and Nick Kingham (elbow) both getting injured.

• Royals prospect Kyle Zimmer (shoulder) experienced a setback in his rehab process.

Chris Denorfia is back on the DL with another strained hamstring.

• Eno talked to Wil Myers about finally feeling healthy.

“The biggest thing is that I’m finally healthy,” said Wil Myers before a game with the Giants. After breaking his wrist in the fourth game of the year in 2014, and then following that up with another broken wrist (the other one) about six weeks later, Myers is happy to have his health. Those broken wrists did a number on his game.

After the first wrist broke, Myers played through it. “I still have a bone that sticks out,” Myers said as he points to a protrusion. “And any time I turned this wrist over, this tendon right here was very painful.” Even that first half of last year, before the second injury, Myers had below-average power (.126 Isolated Slugging, .145 is average).

• At RotoWire ($), I looked at four hitters who have been possibly playing through injuries.

Velocity Readings

Luke Hochevar’s velocity looks down compared to previous values.

Chad Billingsley’s average fastball velocity is on par with his recent values.

Players on the DL in 2015

The Red players have had updates since the last report. Click on the “Date” for a link to goto the latest article on the player.

Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won four FSWA Awards including on for his Mining the News series. He's won Tout Wars three times, LABR once, and got his first NFBC Main Event win in 2021. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.

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7 years ago

Any worries about Sale? His velocity & zone% look OK.