Even if Kyle Wright is slightly behind in his throwing schedule, Atlanta is hoping he won’t have to start the regular season on the injured list, according to Mark Bowman of MLB.com. The right-hander produced comfortably his best season to date last year, breaking out after owning a combined 6.56 ERA. over the previous four seasons to go 21-5 with a 3.19 ERA over 180 1/3 innings.
The 27-year-old’s off-season prep was halted for three weeks in January following a cortisone injection in his right shoulder. That’s put him behind schedule as spring training begins, and Wright’s unlikely to make any starts for Atlanta over the first few weeks of Grapefruit League action in Florida. As Bowman reports, the hope is he’ll be able to increase his pitch count during the back half of spring training to a point where he can throw around 75 pitches in his regular season debut. That would probably mean he’d miss Atlanta’s opening series in Washington, instead targeting the trip to St Louis as a possible season debut.
Here’s some more notes from around the National League East:
- The Nationals intend to use 2022 breakout star Joey Meneses in a utility role this season. Manager Dave Martinez told reporters (including Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post) that Meneses would play “a lot of a little bit of everywhere.” That’ll mean he sees time at first base, left field and DH on the rebuilding Nats. As a 30-year-old rookie, Meneses slashed .324/.367/.563 with 13 home runs across 240 plate appearances last season, a small bright spot in a disappointing campaign for Washington. He was certainly helped by a .371 BABIP, but nonetheless it was an impressive debut stint in the big leagues for a player who toiled away for 11 years for reaching the bigs.
- Sticking with the Nats for now, and reliever Tanner Rainey is targeting a return at the 12-month mark since his Tommy John surgery. As Jessica Camerato of MLB.com reports, Rainey is in the third week of his throwing program, and a return a year after surgery would have him slated to be back on the mound in the first week of August. Of course, there’s a lot that can happen between now and then, and with the Nats in the midst of a rebuild they’d certainly be unlikely to rush him back, but it’s an encouraging sign for the 30-year-old, who worked to a 3.30 ERA over 30 innings last season before going down.
- Phillies infielder Edmundo Sosa is working on learning center field, according to Scott Lauber of the Philadelphia Inquirer. The plan is for the Phillies to get Sosa some center field reps during spring training in the hope he’ll be in a position for that to be an option during the regular season. Sosa has appeared in all of 3 1/3 innings in the outfield in his career, but the bulk of his appearances for the Cardinals and Phillies have come in the middle infield spots. After slashing .227/.275/.369 with two home runs, Sosa projects as an infield option on the bench in 2023, with Trea Turner and Bryson Stott manning the positions full time. Veteran Josh Harrison is also projected as a bench option that can cover the infield positions, so adding center field to Sosa’s repertoire would certainly help to deepen the bench options available to manager Rob Thomson.
Meneses did have an inflated BABIP but a lot of the other under the hood numbers looked pretty dang solid. Always great to see an “older” guy get his chance finally. I think he’ll be a solid bat this year.
Pretty sure Sosa is taking those reps as a “just in case of” thing….Given his athleticism, it shouldn’t be too hard of a learning curve?
Assuming Hall at DH, Guthrie will be the 4th OF, Harrison/Sosa inf, Stubbs c, all bench spots are sown up.
Phils have Clemens in aaa (who Dombrowski has spoken well about) and a couple decent OF options in case an injury occurs….
Agreed. I think Sosa is too valuable as a defensive infielder to waste in CF, but may as well give everything a whirl in Spring Training.
The transition from a slick fielding ss to cf shouldn’t be that hard for Sosa. He may wind up being the second option behind Marsh in cf. With Turner at ss, Sosa will see most of his action at 3rd and 2nd base. If he can play above average defensively in cf, then Sosa will see more action, rotating between those three positions. If he doesn’t acclimate hinself to cf in spring training, D D may look to add a rh hitting outfielder that is primarily a cf.
Death, taxes, and a utility INF in the Phillies system attempting to learn CF
Phillies finally got a solid CF, but in typical Phillies fashion, they forgot to get a backup.
Scott Kingery appreciates the props, Michael Martinez, not so much….
In Martinez’s defense, he was never a top prospect like Kingery, and was already being used in the OF before they acquired him.
Never said or hinted he was. He would be an ok 13th/26th man today.
It was just obvious when he was in Philly, he didn’t have much of a hitting game.
I just threw out 2 guys at different ends of the spectrum…
And even at 29(April) still hoping Kingery can catch on with a team next year.
$8.25mil is Kingery’s 2023 pay
I hope he hits .375 in aaa
Aloha, check out my profile pic….
It’s the jetty at Fort DeRussy Park….spent a lot of time chilling there watching sunsets and listening to all those planes. Lived on Kalakaua Ave…
on phone….missed “it reminded me of the”
You Can Put It In The Books .
Injuries mounting already for the Braves pitching staff. Wright was a one-hit wonder anyway, so not much of a loss.
You Can Put It In The Books .
We’re talking about a career .250 hitter with zero pop.
More interestingly than this non-story, Sosa almost killed an umpire (Junior Valentine) with a wild throw to first while playing SS for STL. Drilled him in the head. Junior went down. Very scary.
Sosa is terrible.
I actually saw that play live. It was insane. Sosa is a very solid defender despite that awful play. His average and lack of pop is not really relevant because he’s simply meant as a late-inning replacement. He’s particularly valuable on a team with sub-par defense like the Phils.
Mets weren’t even part of this convo. How does it feel they’re living rent free in your head lmao
Part of the conversation or not, the Mets do suck.
You Can Put It In The Books .
Dynamite analysis lol
Spot on, nothing more needs to be said.
I’m thinking Joey will get pitched around a lot. Maybe Ruiz can take advantage.