Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodriguez suffered a seemingly minor right knee injury during his winter ball appearance last night, as Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports. President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski says that Rodriguez merely “tweaked” the joint, explaining that “it doesn’t appear to be anything serious.” Still, it’s of greater concern in this case given that the young hurler missed significant time with an injury to the same knee last year, which delayed his start to the 2016 season. Rodriguez ultimately settled in and performed well for much of the season, but certainly the organization will hope to avoid any such complications this time around. The 23-year-old is expected to be an important part of Boston’s rotation plans, likely competing for a starting role in camp with Drew Pomeranz and Steven Wright.
Here’s more from the east coast:
- Braves outfielder Mallex Smith has also suffered what’s hoped to be a minor injury in winter-ball action, as David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. The 23-year-old had previously been limited by an oblique injury, and aggravated that problem while playing in Puerto Rico. Atlanta decided to pull him out of action, cutting short his offseason work for the time being. Smith appears likely to open the 2017 season in the upper minors after making his MLB debut in 2016. He ended the year with a .238/.316/.365 batting line and 16 steals (against eight times being caught) over 215 plate appearances. Smith is largely blocked at the major-league level in the near term, and the organization is said to be interested in ensuring that he continues to develop by receiving plenty of plate appearances after a thumb injury limited him in 2016. (Aside from the above-noted MLB time, Smith played in just eight games.)
- While some still believe there’s a possibility the Nationals will pursue free-agent catcher Matt Wieters, Pete Kerzel of MASNsports.com argues that it’s not a sensible fit. In particular, the Nats have shown a predilection for high-quality pitch framers of late, and Wieters doesn’t rate well in that area. With at least three viable options already on hand, says Kerzel, the Nats likely won’t tie up payroll to add the veteran.
- One player that the Nationals do have ongoing interest in is right-handed reliever, Aaron Barrett, Kerzel further writes. That dovetails with other recent reports, and certainly makes sense given the organization’s ongoing need to bolster its depth in the bullpen. Kerzel says that the Nats “have always liked Barrett’s power arm and competitive nature,” and surely also appreciate the fact that he’d remain controllable into the future via arbitration if he’s able to return to health after successive elbow surgeries.
- The Marlins have given signals that they believe the bulk of their offseason work is already complete, as Tim Healey of the Miami Sun-Sentinel recently reported. Miami doesn’t feel that it must have a southpaw in its bullpen, as the organization believes its existing righties can succeed against opposing lefties, and already feels that there’s plenty of pen competition in the existing mix. While it seemingly makes sense for the team to pursue a righty bench bat to pair with Justin Bour at first, meanwhile, president of baseball operations Mike Hill says that’s “not a priority.” It seems that the organization is interested in giving Bour greater opportunity against left-handed pitching in 2017. He has taken just 110 plate appearances against southpaws in his career, producing an anemic .223/.273/.291 batting line. With catcher J.T. Realmuto potentially available to spend some time at first, presumably reducing his wear and tear while opening some chances for reserve backstop A.J. Ellis, the Marlins do not appear inclined to dedicate a roster spot to a defensively limited hitter, though Hill said the team will continue to “monitor” the market.
Last time Erod got a “minor” knee injury he was out for like half the season… On the other hand now that he’s the number 4 starter its not nearly a big blow
Is he the #4?
I’d say he’s on the outside looking in
If healthy I’d bet ERod will be in the rotation and Pomeranz will be stretched out and used as swing man / spot starter.
Listed as #4 here…
It would be nice if they could maneuver the rotation to have Wright after Sale somehow, as well as separating Price and Pomeranz. I feel like the change in look on the mound there with Sale and Wright could be pretty hard to adjust to. Not usually something I care much about, but in this instance, it could make some sense. That being said, I don’t know how you do that when Sale is the #1 SP, and Porcello just came off the Cy Young (even though as a Red Sox fan, I thought Verlander should have won it). Seems like Sale, Price, Porcello, Pomeranz, Wright makes some sense
Porcello Sale Price Wright and ERod!! Pomeranz to the pen
ghost of harambe
He’ll be number 5 ahead of Pomeranz
I wouldn’t call Erod a number 4 starter. With the season Steven Wright had he’s a possible 5. They have to have another RHP besides porcello
I would call Erod simply injury prone. Makes you wonder about his fitness. You won’t be able to count on him to be in the rotation in April. After a lengthy DL stint he will be back in time to try to cover other injuries. How often does the winter stove dream rotation stay productive and healthy all season?
Marlins should’ve kept Brad Hand. A very effective and cost-controlled LHP was already theirs.
They rushed him to the bigs, used up his options, never used him right either. Worked out for him to get out of here. Always had command problems. I never thought he could be a bullpen guys b/c of those issues in short stints…Marlins could use him as a SP though lol
You mean they “overplayed their Hand”?
No doubt. One of the better under the radar pickups last year by Preller. Should fetch a nice return if they wanna flip him in July.
ERod is going to be in the rotation. They need to decide if Pomerantz can function as a starter or if he is better suited as a reliever and Wright will end up where ever Pomerantz doesn’t, if Pomerantz is in the rotation Wright will be in the pen but if Pomerantz ends up in the pen Wright goes to the rotation. In my opinion Sale will be #1 Porcello will be #2 Price will be #3 ERod will be #4 and Wright and Pomerantz and possibly Brian Johnson and maybe even others will battle for the last spot.
ghost of harambe
There’s no way johnson starts the season in the majors unless 2 starters gets injured in spring training
Wow. We’re at that point where Loria decides part way is enough, and when it doesn’t work he’ll complain that he tried. So ridiculous they can’t add a SP or a cheap RH option at 1b. Bour honestly doesn’t look over matched against lefties, and neither does Dietrich, but the numbers are what they are for a reason. I thought they figured that out a couple of years ago after they let Garrett Jones and Salty face lefties
Putting Erod in the pen would severely stunt his maturation. In my opinion he will be in the rotation unless he overwhelmingly underperforms in which case he will be sent to the minors.
Wright will most likely be the odd man out and used in the same way Tim Wakefield was. Swing man. These are, as they say, good problems to have.
I think the Red Sox have 3 men set in the rotation and they have three guys competing for 3 spots. My guess is they will break camp with whomever pitches the best out of Rodriguez, Wright, and Pom. It will be a good old fashioned competition for 3 spots. Whoever misses out will be in the pen to start but will likely get the first opening when an injury or ineffectiveness happens.
Marlins had Norge Luis Ruiz on the market and they did nothing to get him, he was a perfect fit here, an innings eater, young arm, great talent and cuban he sells games here, + he was cheap.
Marlins have been almost non existant in international market for the last 15 years. Pretty much entirely non existant in the guys getting more than 200k to sign