Not only did Rangers assistant general manager Thad Levine announce that Vicente Padilla was diagnosed with H1N1 Type A influenza, better known as “Swine Flu” on Friday, but that he is still scheduled to make his next start on Tuesday:
“He was as surprised as anyone when
we told him this was the case. From everything we’ve been told, this is
certainly a different strain of the normal flu and by nature might be
deemed more serious, but you really wouldn’t treat it any differently.”
“Without speculating, I think it is
reasonable to expect that we may find some of our other guys have it.
We’ve been medicating our players. We would use the same medication and
the same kind program to rehabilitate them and they’ve all shown
improvement. Those are the positive signs.”
“As an extra precaution, we have
encouraged him to go back to the hotel tonight and not sit in the
dugout or the clubhouse. He’s done that. I think we’ll continue to take
that level of precaution, and in addition [with] everyone else.”
In a related story, baseball sources tell Circling the Bases that Omar
Minaya has contacted Rangers general manager Jon Daniels in hopes that
an acquisition of Swine Flu could give the team a potential boost down
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.