All-Star player. Struggles right out of the gate. Team record through April and May is poor at best.
Then all of a sudden, the team says that key players may (or may not) be experiencing “soreness” in key joints that prove to be key in the game of baseball. Player will attempt to play through injuries. Player is unsuccessful doing such, ultimately hitting disabled list.
Feel free to plug in either Victor Martinez or Travis Hafner circa 2008. Or, if you’re feeling a little more contemporary, we can now use Grady Sizemore of this season.
Hitting just over .200 for the season, Eric Wedge insisted on putting Sizemore at the top of the lineup. After multiple months of struggles, Sizemore was moved down the lineup in favor of the considerably better contact hitter Asdrubal Cabrera. Then, Sizemore was moved to the DH slot as we became aware that he was experiencing elbow soreness. And wouldn’t you know, the DL stint was announced just this past weekend.
And of course, now we have team trainer Lonnie Soloff saying that surgery may be needed to repair the inflammation in the elbow of question.
“There is no structural damage to the elbow,” Indians trainer Lonnie Soloff said. “The treatment is rest, or stop doing what caused the symptoms. Unfortunately at the elbow, the thing that causes the soreness is extension.
Sizemore will be reevaluated when he is eligible to come off the disabled list. If the elbow is still sore, he will then have the surgery, which comes with a scheduled recovery time of four to six weeks.
“Closer to six,” Soloff said.”
So, instead of shutting him down once the issue came into play, the team trotted him out there costing us a considerable amount of outs. Earning more at-bats than anyone else on the team will do that to you.
Last season, we saw the same with Victor and Travis. Only to have Victor ultimately come back and help the team during their late-season surge.
Had the team been proactive with both players, we could have seen more games with both players being 100 percent – perhaps leading to a few more victories.
You have to wonder what leads to the decisions of squeezing out every last game. Similar to Romeo Crennel refusing to play rookies, I wonder if Eric Wedge feels that playing his All-Stars at less-than-100 percent gives him a better chance of keeping his job opposed to struggling with the Trevor Crowes of the world getting full-time cuts.
Losing Sizemore for a considerable amount of time would defintely be a big blow on paper, but if it allows us to develop those outfielders that are to be the future of this team, at least it temporarily opens up another outfield spot.
For now, lets hope that the rest does the trick and we can get a fully healthy, gold glove outfielder back in the mix. I can’t imagine we have seen one of those yet this season.
(Update: Vince saw this one coming down Euclid on the Silver Line)