Under The Knife: Benefits of long toss promising, in need of results
As Albert Chen
We only have
Still, it's a concern that these two uber-prospects are being made into the poster children for the technique. If both succeed, there will be copies. If one fails, people will cluck, especially if there's an injury. (Some will look at Bauer's delivery and see Tim Lincecum, while others will point out the "inverted W" at
Long toss is going to continue to be controversial until we get two things: successful major leaguers and solid scientific research. The first could be coming a lot sooner than people thought, and the latter, well, that's up to the teams. Powered by that feeling we all got when Buck Showalter decided to pitch to Josh Hamilton in the eighth inning Tuesday night, on to the injuries:
Werth's injury has widely been reported as a fractured wrist, but the actual injury is to his radius, one of the bones of the arm rather than the small bones that make up the anatomical wrist. That said, Werth's history with both fractures and ligament damage in the anatomical wrist complicates the current injury, since the articulation of the wrist joint is the function that Werth and the Nats are most interested in as he rehabs. To help make sure that the previous injury doesn't become an issue, Werth went back to the doctor who did his prior surgery. The fracture was fixated using a combination of hardware and he could be back in as soon as six weeks, but this is likely to go longer. The injury is not at the anatomical wrist; the bone should clearly heal and won't have the same kind of strength and fine control issues as someone with an anatomical wrist problem. (This is in contrast this with Pablo Sandoval's bilateral hamate fractures the past two seasons.) Expecting Werth back after the All-Star break seems a reasonable mid-point expectation, but his response to the rehab and the lack of any complications as a result of his previous problem is what's key.
Rivera's surgery to reconstruct his ACL has been delayed by what his agent Fernando Cuza told the
One of the best signs to me that MLB's drug policy is effective is how few repeat offenders there are. While we don't have complete numbers due to how the amphetamine policy is administered, there's very little in the way of recidivism among the drugs that people seem to care about. (Unless you're going to call out everyone from Ted Williams to Willie Mays to Hank Aaron, few care about "greenies.") Mota was suspended for a positive test for clenbuterol, which he will argue came from a child's cough syrup. There is a case of a
MLB has the steroid issue, which won't seem to go away no matter what they do and how well they're handling it. The NFL has the concussion issue, which is quickly becoming something that could do something as extreme as
One of the things that fascinates me about baseball is the family connections. We have brothers playing with brothers, sons following in their fathers' footsteps, and other connections that are a bit more convoluted. Obviously, a father doesn't pass down sport-specific genes, but does pass down certain traits that can benefit any athletic endeavor. We see more and more situations where an athlete father has a son in a different sport*, whether it's Ken Griffey Jr. or David Robinson, both of whom have sons preparing to play NCAA football.
Schlereth's situation is a bit different. Schlereth is, of course, the son of former NFL offensive lineman Mark Schlereth. The elder Schlereth was not only a Super Bowl winning lineman, but was famous for the sheer number of injuries and surgeries he had during his career. Did Schlereth pere pass on athleticism and size, as well as some genetic proclivity to injury? It's possible, though there's still far more we don't know about this than we do, not to mention the complicating factors of having a privileged upbringing. Schlereth is dealing with shoulder tendinitis and was optioned to Toledo (AAA), but that was rescinded and Schlereth was placed on the DL. He's likely to go to Toledo on a rehab assignment when ready and the option could come back into play unless his performance issues were purely a result of the inflammation. The ERD is a most likely scenario, but the option possibility and backdating to 4/21 complicates the return.
(* Twitter provided some great examples of sons who played a different sport than the father, including Jayson Werth, Ken Norton, Joakim Noah, Grant Hill, and Kyle Williams. Other baseball sons that play different sports include Barry Larkin's son (basketball), Torii Hunter's son (football), and Wayne Gretzky's son (baseball, Cubs).
Even a minor hamstring strain can't slow down