Spring Training Injury Roundup: March 25 (2022 Fantasy Baseball)

With all the excitement of baseball taking over, we are, unfortunately, faced with all that comes with it. The quick ramp-up to get players ready for the season is rearing its ugly face, as we have seen a lot of significant injuries take place. We also have a number of players recovering from pre-lockout injuries whom we are hoping to have back sooner rather than later.

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Arizona Diamondbacks

Zac Gallen (RHP) – Shoulder

  • Gallen’s status for Opening Day is in question due to some discomfort he started to feel in his right shoulder. He began feeling discomfort during the lockout, during which he was not able to report it to the team, and was diagnosed with bursitis after undergoing an MRI. The D-Backs will look to build a rotation around Madison Bumgarner, Merrill Kelly, Luke Weaverand two of NRI Dan Straily (NRI), Tyler Gilbertand Corbin Martin.

Chicago Cubs

Adbert Alzolay (RHP) – Shoulder

  • Alzolay reported shoulder tightness, and the Cubs are trying to figure out the severity of it. He has already been ruled out through April, so Justin Steele and Keegan Thompson will battle it out for his rotation spot.

Ian Happ (OF) – Elbow

  • Happ has a procedure on his elbow to clean up some loose bodies. Cubs president of baseball operations Jedd Hoyer reported that Happ should be ready to go for Opening Day, but they are not going to rush him. If Happ were in the lineup, he would likely be slotted into the DH role.

Cincinnati Reds

Luis Castillo (RHP) – Shoulder

  • Manager David Bell stated that Castillo was shut down due to shoulder soreness when he arrived at camp. Castillo has started throwing again, but due to the quick turnaround, he is behind schedule. If Castillo is unable to start the season, it allows top prospects like Nick Lodolo and Hunter Greene a chance to crack the Opening Day roster.

Lucas Sims (RHP) – Elbow

  • Contrary to multiple reports, Sims states that he’s “all clear” in regard to his elbow concerns. Sims’ elbow injuries date back to last season and need to be monitored, as he was supposed to be the closer for the Reds at the beginning of the season. Art Warren seems to be the benefactor in this situation.

Miami Marlins

Sixto Sanchez (RHP) – Shoulder

  • It was last year that the reports of Sixto’s shoulder injuries began to arise. He has been shut down, and there is no clear timetable for his return. He was recently optioned back to AAA, where he will continue to be monitored and hopefully will start throwing in the coming weeks.

New York Mets

Starling Marte (OF) – Oblique

  • Marte is no stranger to oblique injuries. Although Buck Showalter hasn’t reported anything negative, the most action game Marte has seen was when he took “non-swinging” at-bats in a minor league game at Mets camp. The Mets said they do not want to rush Marte back, as they expect him to play a key role in their path to the playoffs. Brandon Nimmo will likely man centerfield for the Mets on Opening Day.

Taijuan Walker (RHP) – Knee

  • Walker underwent knee surgery in January after a piece of cartilage broke off in his kneecap during a workout. The procedure was said to delay him “a week or two” from the rest of the Mets starting rotation. He is starting to run and throw under careful supervision. Walker just threw his first bullpen session, where he was able to get off 40 pitches.

Philadelphia Phillies

Zack Wheeler (RHP) – Shoulder

  • Wheeler reported to camp with soreness in his throwing shoulder. Manager Joe Girardi was skeptical when asked if Wheeler would be ready for the season. Since then, Wheeler has been able to throw multiple bullpen sessions, but he still says he is “a little behind.” Recent reports are that the soreness has subsided, but it is something to monitor as the season approaches.

Zach Eflin (RHP) – Knee

  • Eflin underwent surgery in early September to address patellar tendon damage in his right knee. Even with the six-to-eight-month recovery timeline he was given, Eflin has already started throwing off the mound. He appears to be on track to return on the shorter end of that timeline, and the slight delay to the start of the season gives him the chance to be with the Phillies on Opening Day.

St. Louis Cardinals

Jack Flaherty (RHP) – Shoulder

  • Like Gallen, Flaherty was also diagnosed with bursitis in his throwing shoulder. The injury led him to receive a PRP injection, and the injury is said to be linked to the left oblique injury he suffered last season. Flaherty also stated that he has a pre-existing labrum tear in his shoulder that he has been pitching through for “a handful of years.” Flaherty has been ruled out for the start of the season, and there is no clear timetable for his return.

Tampa Bay Rays

Shane Baz (RHP) – Elbow

  • The Rays right-hander underwent surgery in his throwing elbow to remove loose bodies and is now expected to be shut down for 2-3 weeks before he starts throwing again. This all but guarantees that Baz will miss the first several weeks of the 2022 season. Once he can throw, he will need plenty of time to ramp back up. The Rays have always been cautious with their young players, and Baz should not be an exception. We likely won’t see Baz again until June.

Luis Patino (RHP) – Shoulder

  • Patino was scratched from his last start after experiencing an arm issue during warmups before his scheduled start. Te Rays do not seem too concerned with the injury and are planning to have him throw live batting practice in the coming days. If the issue continues to flare, he will be another shutdown candidate.

Washington Nationals

Stephen Strasburg (RHP) – Neck

  • Nearly eight months removed from thoracic outlet syndrome surgery, Strasburg will not be rushed back for Opening Day. Last week, he threw off a mound for the first time in Spring Training, and there has not been a report of a setback. Strasbourg recently stated that he plans to follow his usual six-week spring training program. He intends to make his season debut sometime near the end of April.

Carter Kieboom (3B) – Elbow

  • The Nationals third baseman underwent an MRI on his throwing elbow that revealed a flexor mass strain in his forearm. Entering his fourth season with the ballclub, Kieboom is expected to miss the next four to six weeks of action. That has been referred to as a “best-case scenario.” The Nats signed Maikel Franco as a non-roster invitee, and he now looks to be the Opening Day starter at the hot corner.

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