Dodgers don’t put a period on question marks
By Cary Osborne
Sifting through injury reports across the big leagues, it’s undeniable — the Dodgers are the Major League team that has had the most significant physical setbacks this spring.
To save you the pain, I won’t list the players in pain, although Yasiel Puig (tight left hamstring) was added today to the assortment that’s being held out for precautionary reasons.
But the Dodgers aren’t the only team in baseball who are approaching Opening Day with concerns. In fact, one team in the National League West has different worries.
The San Francisco starting pitching quintet of Madison Bumgarner, Johnny Cueto, Jeff Samardzija, Jake Peavy and Matt Cain have a combined 9.46 ERA this spring. Jake Peavy has the lowest ERA of the five at 8.31.
There’s a notion that Spring Training numbers don’t matter for veteran players — especially the type of players those five are. In fact, Cueto, the pitcher with the second best ERA in baseball the last five years, has now had seven unspectacular springs in a row. But here’s a better read on the Giants’ up-and-down spring by the San Francisco Chronicle’s Henry Schulman.
The Dodgers are in San Francisco April 7-10.
The team that has been hit hardest by hurts in baseball after the Dodgers is the St. Louis Cardinals.
St. Louis came into the season knowing it would be without starter Lance Lynn, who had Tommy John Surgery in November. But they lost All-Star shortstop Jhonny Peralta early in Spring Training to a torn thumb ligament, and he might not be back until June. All-Star catcher Yadier Molina is working his way back from thumb surgery, though reports have him on track for Opening Day. Hard-throwing reliever Jordan Walden, who missed most of 2015 with a shoulder surgery, came down with a knot in his lat muscle Friday.
The Rockies, who the Dodgers play April 22-24, have had three potential Opening Day roster players suffer injuries this spring. The team’s top pitching prospect Jon Gray (strained abdominal muscle), reliever Jairo Diaz (Tommy John surgery) and utility infielder Daniel Descalso (broken bone in his glove hand) are currently on the shelf. Add to that, shortstop Jose Reyes is suspended indefinitely.
In case you’re wondering, Arizona and San Diego have been pretty problem-free this spring. Arizona Gold Glove outfielder A.J. Pollock took his first swings in a game on Friday since March 24 because of soreness in his elbow, but other than him there haven’t been red flags.