MLB Injury Roundup

by Tim Heaney on April 13, 2007 @ 16:00:00 PDT

 


Welcome to KFFL.com's Injury Roundup. Each week, we bring you the latest from around the diamond on key injury issues. Who are the latest players on the disabled list that could affect their team's production, which players may be headed to the disabled list soon and which players may be returning to the fold in the coming days or weeks?

PRIME-TIME PLAYERS

Arizona Diamondbacks starter Randy Johnson (back) hurled six innings in a High-A minor league game for Visalia, striking out six. He said he will most likely require one more rehab start before returning.

Chicago White Sox starter Mark Buehrle (arm) made his first start since taking a liner off his forearm Wednesday night and was effective. He went seven innings, giving up three runs on four hits with two walks and a strikeout in a no-decision in Chicago's 6-3 win over Oakland. He is safe to start for now. 

Florida Marlins shortstop Hanley Ramirez (hamstring) was listed as day-to-day this past week, sitting out Monday through Wednesday.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim third baseman Chone Figgins (fingers) could start throwing a ball within the next week. X-rays have shown that his multiple finger fractures have healed, and he had splints removed.

Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Rafael Furcal (ankle) was on the verge of returning from the disabled list due to a sprained ankle before he hit a snag in his rehab assignment Wednesday. He felt it tighten up in the field; however, he went to the plate in the top of the sixth. He was unable to make it onto the diamond in the bottom of the sixth. This is most certainly a setback; don't expect Furcal to be ready (or if he suits up, highly effective) for the next week. 

Los Angeles Dodgers starter Jason Schmidt (right hamstring) left his start last Tuesday with hamstring problems, but initial reports say he will make his next scheduled start.

New York Yankees outfielder Johnny Damon (calf) returned to the Yankees lineup on Saturday after missing last Thursday's game due to a strained right calf.

New York Yankees outfielder Hideki Matsui (hamstring) was placed on the 15-day disabled list after straining his left hamstring during Saturday's game. He was replaced by Miguel Cairo Saturday, and the Yankees called up outfielder Kevin Thompson to replace him on the roster. Outfielder Melky Cabrera has been filling in for Matsui in the starting lineup.

New York Yankees starting pitcher Mike Mussina (hamstring) left his start Wednesday night in the third inning, due to a pulled hamstring.

St. Louis Cardinals starter Chris Carpenter (elbow) was placed on the 15-day disabled list Monday after magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) test results showed arthritis and a previously unseen impingement in his right elbow. Carpenter is expected to rest for 10 days to two weeks before deciding whether or not to undergo surgery, which is a common treatment for the ailment. Braden Looper has been inserted into the rotation and has been solid in his last two outings.

St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Scott Rolen (back) missed both Tuesday and Wednesday's games due to back spasms. Monitor this situation closely as Rolen has been plagued with injuries in the past three years.

AROUND THE DIAMOND

AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST

Baltimore Orioles - Catcher Ramon Hernandez (oblique) is eligible to return from the disabled list Sunday. However, the Orioles will hold off until the series that starts the next night... Outfielder Jay Payton (hamstring) will begin a running program and eventually some extended spring training games while recovering from a strained hamstring... Starter Jaret Wright (left shoulder stiffness) is losing his spot in the rotation through both health and performance. He has reported problems similar to ones that prompted two prior shoulder surgeries and has been placed on the 15-day disabled list.

Boston Red Sox - Reliever Mike Timlin (oblique) was activated from the disabled list Tuesday... Starter Jon Lester (cancer) threw four shutout innings Thursday, April 5, in his first start of the year, with Class A Greenville. He threw four innings and 51 pitches in his start last Tuesday. He's slated to get a three-month checkup later in April to verify if he is still cancer-free. 

New York Yankees - Starter Chien-Ming Wang (hamstring) could throw in a simulated game over the weekend and remains on schedule for a late-April return to the starting rotation, as long as he throws at least two rehabilitation starts.

Tampa Bay Devil Rays - No injuries to report.

Toronto Blue Jays - Starter John Thomson (shoulder) and pitcher Davis Romero (shoulder) were both placed on the 15-day disabled list... Pitcher Brandon League (shoulder) will require one week of minor league rehab before returning to the big league staff.

AMERICAN LEAGUE CENTRAL

Chicago White Sox - Second baseman Tadahito Iguchi (finger) missed two straight games this week with a bruised finger... Catcher Toby Hall (shoulder) is confident he can avoid surgery with proper rehab. Even so, Hall is out until at least May with a torn labrum.

Cleveland Indians - Catcher Victor Martinez (quadriceps) is hoping to return this coming weekend after straining his left quadriceps. He didn't accompany the team on their "home" trip to Milwaukee... Starter Cliff Lee (abdominal strain) gave up one hit over two innings of work for Class A Kinston on Tuesday.

Detroit Tigers - Catcher Ivan Rodriguez is day-to-day after getting hit in the foot with a foul ball. No word on if he will miss any time... Vance Wilson (elbow) is starting to feel better, and he hoped to play catch sometime this week.

Kansas City Royals - The team transferred pitcher Leo Nunez (wrist) from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list... Closer Octavio Dotel (left oblique) won't throw again until April 20, meaning the Royals will stick with reliever David Riske to close out games in the meantime.

Minnesota Twins - Third baseman Jeff Cirillo (knee) underwent successful arthroscopic surgery on his left knee, which revealed an old meniscus tear. He will miss three to six weeks... Outfielder Lew Ford (knee) is lagging on his rehab and is not expected to return within the next few months... Outfielder Rondell White (calf) was placed on the 15-day disabled list this week after tweaking his calf while skipping on his way out of the dugout. Those who have followed White's career are hardly surprised.

AMERICAN LEAGUE WEST

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim - Starter Jered Weaver (biceps) is not a guarantee to meet his return mark of April 16, as previously targeted. The Angels are hoping he will make two rehab starts before he returns... Starter Bartolo Colon (rotator cuff) worked into the sixth inning in his second rehab start Tuesday night, allowing two runs while striking out five. His fastball has been registered as high as 94 mph over the course of his rehab... First baseman Shea Hillenbrand pulled up lame after hitting a deep fly ball, ending up at first on what should have been a double. He is currently day-to-day, but keep an eye on his progress.

Oakland Athletics - Starter Esteban Loaiza (shoulder, neck) has been held out of throwing after suffering a bulging disc in his neck, in addition to the spasms he is suffering in his right trapezius muscle. He will not be expected to start throwing for another week... First baseman Dan Johnson (hip) may enter a spring training game within the next 10 days after taking soft toss... Outfielder Mark Kotsay (back) aims to be back into baseball activities in mid-May.

Seattle Mariners - Reliever Arthur Rhodes (elbow) was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a torn ligament in his pitching elbow, and he is currently deliberating ligament replacement surgery.

Texas Rangers - Closer Eric Gagne (elbow) was successful enough in his rehab assignments that if he doesn't succumb to a hangnail, he will resume closer duties this weekend. 

NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST

Atlanta Braves - Starter Lance Cormier (shoulder) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 31. Cormier is hopeful he will miss just one start and possibly rejoin the rotation in two weeks... Starter Mike Hampton (elbow) will miss the entire season after a torn ligament was discovered in his left elbow. He will not perform any pitching activities for at least the next six months.

Florida Marlins - Reliever Taylor Tankersley (shoulder) was activated from the disabled list Wednesday... Outfielder Jeremy Hermida (knee) is not close to returning from the disabled list as he has yet to be scheduled for a hitting session... Starter Josh Johnson (biceps) has thrown off flat ground four times in the past week and is on a light-throwing pattern where he is playing catch every other day. If he's on your waiver wire and you have an empty disabled list slot, he is worth picking up for later in the season... Starter Ricky Nolasco (elbow) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Saturday with tenderness in his right elbow.

New York Mets - Pitcher Dave Williams (neck), starter Pedro Martinez (elbow), reliever Juan Padilla (elbow) and reliever Duaner Sanchez (shoulder) were all placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to March 23.

Philadelphia Phillies - Starter Freddy Garcia (biceps) threw 15 pitches last Thursday in a start for Single-A Clearwater. He is still scheduled to be back with the big club on April 15... Catcher/infielder Chris Coste (hamstring) went on the 15-day disabled list, as did pitcher Scott Mathieson (elbow) and catcher Ryan Budde (intercostal strain).

Washington Nationals - Shortstop Cristian Guzman (hamstring) was put on the 15-day disabled list April 3. Guzman has a Grade 1 hamstring strain, meaning there is no tear, and the injury was sustained on Opening Day while running to first base... Outfielder Nook Logan (foot) is expected to miss two to three weeks with a strained left foot. He injured the foot when he jumped into the outfield wall to make a catch April 2... Reliever Ray King (inflamed left shoulder) left Tuesday's game due to an inflamed left shoulder. He gave up four runs in 2/3 of an inning.

NATIONAL LEAGUE CENTRAL

Chicago Cubs - Reliever Kerry Wood (shoulder) is about two weeks from pitching in live game action... Starter Mark Prior (shoulder) was expected to pitch Thursday in extended spring training in Mesa, Ariz.

Cincinnati Reds - Starter Eric Milton (back) was activated from the disabled list last week and made the start Wednesday. He allowed 10 hits and four runs in 5 2/3 innings in the 6-3 loss.... Reliever Eddie Guardado (elbow) had a throwing session last week where he tossed at about 50 percent strength... First baseman Scott Hatteberg (flu) is getting over a bout of the flu. He was held out of the starting lineup, because he would have faced fellow lefty Doug Davis... Reliever Bill Bray (finger) had his injured finger X-rayed again, and this time the X-ray showed a small, non-dispaced fracture.

Houston Astros - Starter Brandon Backe (elbow) continues to work on his rehab from elbow ligament replacement. He was originally expected to miss the entire 2007 season but is progressing quickly enough that he could return in August. Backe could provide several good outings if healthy later in the season, so keep an eye on this situation.

Milwaukee Brewers - No injuries to report.

Pittsburgh Pirates - Starter Zach Duke (fingernail) returned from the disabled list by winning his first start of the year last Sunday... Reliever John Grabow (elbow) is expected to return in about three weeks, but not before he throws an extended spring training game.

St. Louis Cardinals - Third baseman Scott Spiezio (back) missed the April 3 game against the New York Mets due to soreness in his back... Reliever Josh Kinney (arm) had the cast removed from his right arm March 28 and has begun the lengthy rehab process following elbow surgery last month. He will be in a protective brace for another four weeks... Outfielder Juan Encarnacion (wrist) may be out until at least May. Encarnacion's wrist felt so weak and painful throughout spring training that he was sidelined for a week to receive a cortisone shot. He has also been unable to reach the seats in batting practice and will have to build up strength before he can be considered an option.

NATIONAL LEAGUE WEST

Arizona Diamondbacks - Outfielder Carlos Quentin (torn labrum) took batting practice Monday before heading down to Tucson for some at-bats in extended spring training.

Colorado Rockies - Starter Brian Lawrence (shoulder) struggled mightily in his rehab start last Tuesday, giving up 10 runs in seven innings... Starter Jeff Francis (suspension) started serving his five-game suspension handed down during spring training.

Los Angeles Dodgers - Outfielder Matt Kemp (shoulder) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list... Reliever Yhency Brazoban (elbow) could pitch in a minor league game as soon as next week... Outfielder Jason Repko (hamstring) and pitcher Hong-Chih Kuo (shoulder) have been placed on the 15-day disabled list.

San Diego Padres - Third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff (left elbow contusion) will be out until Friday after missing last Tuesday's game... Reliever Scott Cassidy will spend four to six weeks rehabilitating after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery.

San Francisco Giants - Infielder/outfielder Mark Sweeney (bruised right foot) began a rehabilitation assignment on Tuesday.

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About Tim Heaney

Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in the prestigious LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.

He appears frequently, including every Sunday, on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, as well as every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.

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