MASH Report 9/5/16 by BJ Maack September 5, 2016 A fine extra-day-off to you all…unless you have to pull the “work on a holiday” thing. Props to you for sure. Either way, thanks for reading and for all of the comments in the previous weeks. I mentioned this last week, but I want to camp on this topic for a second. The number-one purpose of a team’s minor league farm system is to develop future talent, we all know that. However, there is a extra fringe benefit that having lower-level teams provide, and that is a place for their injured MLB guys to go down and get some valuable game experience before their official return back to the show. You can “simulate games” all you want, but that extra kick of adrenaline that comes from real competition is something practice can’t provide. For the majority of the season, it’s a regular thing to send a guy down to the minors for a game or tow or three. Now we are the point in the year where most minor leagues begin playoffs today or tomorrow, and it is a little much sometimes for a minor league manager fighting for a title to be expected to throw a random guy from the big-league team into their mix for one game. Which leaves really the fall instructional leagues as a team’s only viable option for rehab assignments for their players at this point in the season. Made up mainly of AA-and-below level players, and even then, doesn’t start for about another 2 weeks. This “black hole” of games is definitely something to be factored into how fast/slow a team decides to bring an injured player back, or to shut him down altogether. Matt Shoemaker…you all have seen the horrific incident yesterday, and it appears that, while it could’ve been worse, he has a skull fracture and a hematoma (tissue swelling). Expect the “helmet-hat” debate to be brought up again. Yunel Escobar was hit by a pitch in yesterday’s game, but initial reports are that he will be fine in a couple of days. Cam Bedrosian is an interesting injury case…..he was placed on the DL with finger tendonitis, but now is shut down for the seasonli to surgically remove a blood clot. Hard to know for sure, but I can’t help but think they did a full MRI on his arm and found more than they were looking for. Chalk one up for the medical staff for finding this. Sonny Gray Is shut down again. Reference this post. Aledmys Diaz did well with a rehab start yesterday, and looks to be activated The Cardinals decided to end the rehab tour for Lance Lynn, as he is now done for the year. Brett Anderson is still dealing with a blister. Clayton Kershaw is back!! Rotation return set for Friday. If you are able, wait-and-see before relying on him like you’r’e used too. James Paxton looks like he will be back in the Mariners’ mix this week, after a solid performance this week in AAA. No hesitations at all. Marcell Ozuna is dealing with a wrist sprain, and is day-to-day. Giancarlo Stanton is in an interesting spot…he is healing much faster than expected, and given the roster expansion, it may well signal he plays again before the end of the year. Jacob deGrom will miss another start. The Mets’ pitching woes are an interesting topic of debate. Some point to their overload last year; others see mechanical issues. Stephen Strasburg MIGHT return this week, in continuing with the “get the ace pitchers back this week” trend. Personally, I feel more confident in his return this week than do I Kershaw, but that’s just me. Stephen Drew is still dealing with vertigo. Pass on him. Gerrit Cole is slated to be back on the bump on Sept 12 vs the Phillies Jung Ho Kang is expected to be back in the lineup today vs the Cardinals “Right arm discomfort” has sidelined Pirates RP Neftali Feliz. The team made a specific point to say that it’s “muscular” in nature, meaning that it doesn’t appear to be any of the supporting tissues, like ligaments or tendons. Typically this is better news for a pitcher, but keep in mind this is all early injury diagnosis and could change as the week goes. Andrew Benintendi is getting closer to a return from his MCL left knee sprain. This involves more baseball-specific activities, as opposed to just strengthening exercises. Another interesting piece of this involves him getting a “custom-fitted knee brace.” Examples here.* This should allow him to return faster, providing protection while hopefully not limiting function. Billy Hamilton strained his oblique on a check-swing during Sunday’s game, and, while we will see what the next few days bring, it’s clear this isn’t going to be a quick thing. Homer Bailey is now down with biceps issues, and the Reds say it’s not due to his TJS from last year. I say yeas and no. It’s hard to not see some sort of indirect correlation to these two issues. Either way he is going to miss some time. Lorenzo Cain is expected to be back with in the Royals lineup Monday after dealing with wrist injuries. Danny Santana is now done for the year after a collision that damaged his shoulder. *Full disclosure: this link is to the company I work for, and is used because it’s what i am most familiar with for the purpose of this article.