See Choo Next Year?Wednesday, June 29, 2011
We'll be checking in on Ryan Madson
, Josh Johnson
and Jonathan Broxton
shortly, but we begin with some news we did not want to hear regarding Shin-Soo Choo
's injured thumb: Buster Olney of ESPN.com reports that the struggling outfielder underwent surgery Tuesday and is expected to be out until at least late August, with the possibility remaining that he could miss the rest of the season.
One of the bigger statistical disappointments of 2011, Choo hasn't homered since May 13, hitting just .244 overall with five homers, 28 RBI and 11 steals after averaging 21 homers, 22 steals and 88 RBI the past two seasons. Stashing him on the DL for now is the safest move for fantasy owners, but it's also understandable if owners in need of the roster spot decide to cut him loose in mixed leagues. In the latest setback for the Phillies' bullpen, Ryan Madson (hand) hit the 15-day DL (retroactive to June 19), leaving Antonio Bastardo (0.96 ERA, 33/13 K/BB ratio in 28 innings) as Charlie Manuel's preferred closer for the moment. Manuel may give Michael Stutes some opportunities as well, but Bastardo looks like the player to immediately add in mixed leagues. As for Madson, the retroactive nature of his DL stint gives hope for optimism, but it remains unclear how much time he'll need to recover from the ongoing numbness in his hand. Meanwhile, another plausible closing option in the Philadelphia bullpen, Brad Lidge (elbow), is likely sidelined at least a couple more weeks.
In a quietly unsettling development, Josh Johnson (shoulder) is scheduled to have his shoulder examined by Dr. James Andrews Wednesday. The Marlins are calling it simply a precautionary visit, but we all understand the concerns surrounding any visit to Dr. Andrews. If all goes well, Johnson could still be ready to return soon after the All-Star break.
The Dodgers are shutting down Jonathan Broxton (elbow) for the next three weeks, with manager Don Mattingly telling beat writer Dylan Hernandez that it would be a bonus if Broxton pitches again this season. With Broxton's season outlook continuing to appear bleak, Javy Guerra still looks like the best option for saves in the L.A. bullpen right now.
Sweeny Murti of New York's WFAN radio reports that Bartolo Colon (hamstring) was bunting on Tuesday, fueling speculation that the right-hander is preparing to return against the Mets this weekend. Meanwhile, ESPNNewYork.com reports that Colon is slated to have his hamstring reevaluated on Wednesday, which will likely determine his status for the weekend. Colon had a 1.29 ERA in his last three starts prior to hitting the DL and will be worth activating immediately whenever he does return.
Contrary to a previous report, Johan Santana (shoulder) has not yet resumed throwing from a mound, but is close to doing so, according to MLB.com. There's no current timetable for the left-hander's return, but previous indications have been that he could be back sometime in August.
MLB.com reports that Alexi Ogando (9.31 ERA in his last three starts) could be sent to Triple-A after Friday's start as the Rangers show concern that the reliever-turned-starter is beginning to wear down. If sent down to Triple-A (which will likely only happen if Ogando struggles Friday), the right-hander wouldn't even report, but would simply rest before potentially rejoining the big league rotation after the break. In this scenario, the rehabbing Scott Feldman (knee) would likely take Ogando's place in the rotation.
Jose Tabata (quad) hit the 15-day DL Tuesday, with the Pirates are expecting him to be back after the All-Star break. Alex Presley (.336 average, eight homers, 18 steals at Triple-A) promptly homered as the Pittsburgh leadoff hitter on Tuesday and is worth an immediate add in NL-Only leagues.
Updates on some injured Red Sox: Carl Crawford (hamstring) did some jogging on Tuesday and is eligible to return on Sunday, but Terry Francona told the Boston Globe that "I don't know how realistic that is." Meanwhile, Clay Buchholz (back) says he doesn't want to pitch until he's 100 percent, and it sounds like he's iffy for the July 4 start that has been previously mentioned as a possibility.
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Pitcher injury notes: Jon Niese (rapid heartbeat) appears to have a good chance to make his next scheduled start after a series of tests came back clean … Adam Wainwright (Tommy John) has begun a throwing program and told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that he's hoping to be back for the playoffs, but odds are he won't be back until 2012 … Rich Harden (shoulder) will be activated from the DL to start on Friday … An MRI on John Danks' oblique revealed only a mild strain, but he's still likely out until after the All-Star break … Alfredo Simon (hamstring) appears likely to return Wednesday.
Position player injury notes: An MRI on Delmon Young's ankle showed no ligament damage, suggesting that he should be able to return after the All-Star break … Torii Hunter (ribs) returned to action and went 1-for-5 … David Wright (back) could be cleared to begin hitting off a tee Wednesday as he targets a return immediately after the All-Star break … Derek Jeter (calf) ran the bases Tuesday as the Yankees continue to hope he can return in early July … Elvis Andrus (wrist) was available off the bench Tuesday, but may not return to the starting lineup until Thursday … Mike Napoli (oblique) is expected to begin a minor league rehab assignment Thursday and could be back as soon as Monday … Laynce Nix went 4-for-4 with a homer, but will sit out Wednesday's game with Achilles tightness before hopefully returning Friday.
Position player injury notes (part 2): Jason Bourgeois left Tuesday's game with more quad trouble and could be headed to the DL … Darwin Barney (knee) is expected to return Wednesday … Marlon Byrd (face) went 0-for-3 with a walk in his first rehab game at Triple-A, and the timetable for his return remains uncertain … Nick Johnson (wrist) sat out Tuesday's game at Triple-A … Denard Span (concussion) has begun taking BP indoors, but isn't likely to be back until after the All-Star break … Luke Scott left with a right knee contusion, which could mean more playing time in the short term for Nolan Reimold.
Miscellaneous notes: The slumping Drew Stubbs hit eighth on Tuesday, with Dusty Baker telling MLB.com that Stubbs will regain his leadoff role "eventually" … Carlos Beltran said that he'd be open to waiving his no-trade clause to be dealt to a contender … Padres prospect outfielder Donavan Tate, the No. 3 overall pick in 2009, has been suspended 50 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse … The Blue Jays recalled Brett Cecil from Triple-A in anticipation of a Thursday start against the Pirates … Jake Peavy is ready for his regularly scheduled start on Thursday after appearing in relief over the weekend … Adrian Gonzalez is expected to play right field on Wednesday to get David Ortiz's bat in the lineup at first base … Alex Rios was pulled in the seventh inning for not running hard to first on a fly out.
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Notable pitching: Cliff Lee's absolutely dominant run continued as the left-hander threw his third consecutive shutout, a two-hitter (with two walks and five K's) to finish June with a 0.21 ERA … Tommy Hanson picked up his ninth win in his return from the DL against the Mariners … Zack Greinke gave up a season-worst seven earned runs in just two innings against the Yankees … Josh Beckett allowed five runs in six innings against the Phillies in his first start back from an illness … David Price struck out 12 in 7 2/3 innings in a no-decision against the Reds … Barry Zito threw seven innings of two-run ball to beat the Cubs in his first start back from the DL … Rick Porcello was hit hard for a third consecutive start, giving up seven runs on 11 hits in 3 2/3 innings against the Mets … Gio Gonzalez allowed one hit with nine K's over eight shutout innings against the Marlins.
Notable hitting: Domonic Brown homered for the first time since June 14 … Evan Longoria's walkoff shot was his fourth homer in his last five games … Jose Reyes went 4-for-4 to up his average to .349 … J.J. Hardy hit his ninth homer of June … Edwin Encarnacion hit his fourth and fifth homers of the year … Ichiro Suzuki hit his first homer of the season and stole his 20th base … Aramis Ramirez homered for the eighth time since May 29 … Cameron Maybin (3-for-3 with a steal) had his fourth multi-hit game in his last seven … Wily Mo Pena hit a pinch-hit, walkoff homer to beat the Indians … Jack Cust homered, doubled and hit a rocket lineout to the right field wall … Vernon Wells went 4-for-5 and hit his sixth homer of June.