Athletics lefty Sean Manaea exited yesterday’s game after just two innings due to left shoulder tightness, per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle. The departure of yet another of the Athletics’ top starters is troubling enough, but Slusser adds that Manaea’s velocity was topping out at 90 mph on Wednesday — a far cry from the 95 mph at which he usually tops out and from the 92.5 mph he’s averaged thus far in 2017. Slusser has since tweeted that Manaea did pass some initial strength tests with his shoulder today and hopes to try throwing tomorrow.
Oakland already has Sonny Gray and Kendall Graveman on the disabled list, though they’ll welcome Graveman back to the rotation tonight. If Manaea needs to miss time, I’d imagine that right-handers Cesar Valdez and Paul Blackburn would be options to step into his rotation spot. Each is already on the 40-man roster, and Valdez is presently serving as the team’s long reliever after making a spot start last week.
A few more injury notes from around the game…
- While the Rangers hoped at the time of Adrian Beltre’s most recent setback that he’d be able to join the club by the end of April, it’s now questionable whether he’ll even be ready to take the field at some point in May, according to MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. “It’s at the point where we didn’t necessarily see the progress results we thought we would see,” manager Jeff Banister tells Sullivan. Banister said there’s still no timeline on Beltre, adding that the team is still trying to reduce the swelling and soreness in Beltre’s strained calf. Joey Gallo will continue to man third base in Beltre’s absence.
- Red Sox reliever Carson Smith has had a setback in his recovery from 2016 Tommy John surgery, as Jen McCaffrey of MassLive.com writes. Smith was throwing off a mound a couple of weeks ago but has “had to slow down,” manager John Farrell told reporters. Smith is long tossing from 110 feet but is now two weeks removed from his most recent mound session. Boston had been targeting a June return for Smith, but a July return is now more realistic, per McCaffrey. The Red Sox have had rough luck when trading for potential setup arms; in addition to losing Smith for more than a year due to Tommy John surgery just months after trading for him, the team has yet to reap any benefit from its trade to acquire Tyler Thornburg this offseason, as Thornburg has been sidelined all season by a right shoulder impingement. CSNNE.com’s Evan Drellich tweeted recently that Farrell said on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM that Thornburg essentially needs to progress through Spring Training all over again, which would normally consist of seven to 10 appearances.
- The initial MRI on Denard Span’s shoulder revealed no serious injuries to the Giants center fielder (Twitter links via Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle and Chris Haft of MLB.com). Span, who has already been placed on the 10-day disabled list, said that his shoulder was in too much pain yesterday to even get through the first attempt at an MRI (via Schulman). Manager Bruce Bochy told reporters earlier today that the expectation is that Span will miss more than the minimum 10 days on the disabled list (Twitter link via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).