Health Notes: Pollock, Smith, E-Rod, Villar, Hughes, Zobrist, AGon, Semien, Werth, Flaherty

Posted: June 19, 2017 in Uncategorized
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Diamondbacks outfielder A.J. Pollock has suffered a new injury while on a rehab assignment, as Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic tweets. Pollock, who is working back from a groin strain, is now said to be day-to-day with tightness in his right quad. The severity isn’t yet known, though the presence of another lower-body muscle issue will surely cause the organization to proceed with caution. With the Snakes locked in a surprising and increasingly fascinating battle in the NL West, they will be anxious to get Pollock back, though clearly the long view is required for such an important player with such a checkered injury history.

Let’s check in on a few more injury situations from around the game:

  • The Blue Jays placed righty Joe Smith on the 10-day DL before today’s game, per a club announcement. He is dealing with shoulder inflammation. That’s a big loss for a Toronto club that has made huge strides after a woeful start to the year. Smith has been quite effective while maintaining a heavy workload; through 34 appearances, he carries a 3.41 ERA. More impressively, Smith has nearly doubled last year’s strikeout rate (13.4 K/9) while maintaining a 13.0% swinging-strike rate that dwarfs any of his prior single-season marks.
  • While the Red Sox wait to learn more about the status of second baseman Dustin Pedroia, who took a pitch to the ribcage on Sunday, the club has continued to receive good news on lefty Eduardo Rodriguez. As Rob Bradford of WEEI.com tweets, skipper John Farrell says that Rodriguez will face live hitters this week and possibly head out for a rehab assignment thereafter.
  • Things are clearing up for Brewers infielder Jonathan Villar as well, as MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy tweets. Villar, who has struggled in the wake of a breakout 2016 season, says that his lower back is feeling so much better that he might be ready for a rehab stint soon. Milwaukee may well need a healthy and more effective Villar if it hopes to continue to outpace the rest of the NL Central.
  • In other forthcoming rehab stints, Twins righty Phil Hughes is scheduled for a start at Triple-A on Wednesday, as Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. It seems that he has avoided the worst-case scenario after experiencing some symptoms akin to those that led to thoracic outlet surgery. Minnesota is also giving a rehab start to lefty Hector Santiago, who seems likely to avoid a lengthy DL stint for his shoulder issue.
  • Veteran Cubs infielder/outfielder Ben Zobrist got some good news, as Jeff Arnold of the Chicago Sun-Times writes. An MRI came back clean, leaving the club hopeful that the veteran will be able to return as soon as Friday. That said, Zobrist acknowledged that he still needs to test out the wrist at full speed, noting that “we’re not going to push it.”
  • Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts provided an update on first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, as Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times was among those to tweet. The veteran has received an epidural to treat his lower back issues, says Roberts, with the organization hopeful that Gonzalez will be able to return sometime around the All-Star break next month.
  • The Athletics will send shortstop Marcus Semien out on a rehab assignment later this week, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle tweets. He has been participating in baseball activities to test his surgically repaired wrist, and it seems the progress is sufficient to allow him to take the next step.
  • Meanwhile, the going is somewhat slow for Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth. As Dan Kolko of MASNsport.com tweets, manager Dusty Baker says that the veteran is still not ready for baseball activities. Instead, he’s still focused on taking care of his bruised left foot.
  • The Orioles don’t appear likely to welcome back infielder Ryan Flaherty any time soon, as Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports on Twitter. His balky shoulder didn’t respond well to an attempt to ramp up a throwing program, so the team will slow things down. Were it not for the injury, Flaherty would likely have represented part of the plan for dealing with the more recent DL placement of J.J. Hardy.

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