Sunday injury rundown: Cabrera, Lee, Gonzalez

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asdrubal cabrera follow-through.JPGA few Sunday afternoon minor injury updates from the sunny ball fields of Arizona and Florida…

– Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera has a strained left groin and is considered “day-to-day.”  He was unavailable Saturday and again on Sunday, but it doesn’t sound like an overly serious issue.

– Cubs first baseman Derrek Lee has a bone bruise on the top of his left foot and is expected to miss the next several spring games.  He will not be on the team bus when it heads to Tuscon, Arizona Monday for a game against the Rockies.

– Mike Gonzalez revealed to the media Sunday morning that he was pulled from Saturday’s spring game prematurely due to back soreness.  The O’s closer is fine, though, and will only be out for a couple of days.  The Baltimore Sun’s Peter Schmuck says that Gonzalez has looked sharp in bullpen sessions and is on track for the start of the regular season.

– Pirates infielder Ronny Cedeno left Sunday’s game against the Yankees after suffering a laceration on his right hand, according to Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.  It was a bloody scene in south Florida, but it appears he avoided serious injury.  Cedeno is trying to fend off Bobby Crosby this spring in a battle for the Pirates’ starting shortstop gig.

– Cardinals manager Tony La Russa acknowledged Sunday afternoon that utilityman Julio Lugo is likely to miss up to a week with a groin injury.  Lugo collected three RBI on a home run and double in Saturday’s Grapefruit League victory over the Astros but was injured during his final at-bat.

Cubs sign Brett Anderson to a $3.5 million deal

Brett Anderson
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Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Cubs have signed pitcher Brett Anderson to a contract, pending a physical. Anderson, apparently, impressed the Cubs during a bullpen session held in Arizona recently. According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports, the deal is for $3.5 million, but incentives can bring the total value up to $10 million.

Anderson, 28, has only made a total of 53 starts and 12 relief appearances over the past five seasons due to a litany of injuries. This past season, he made just three starts and one relief appearance, yielding 15 runs on 25 hits and four walks with five strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings. The lefty dealt with back, wrist, and blister issues throughout the year.

When he’s healthy, Anderson is a solid arm to have at the back of a starting rotation or in the bullpen. The defending world champion Cubs aren’t risking much in bringing him on board.

Yordano Ventura’s remaining contract hinges on the results of his toxicology report

DETROIT, MI - SEPTEMBER 24: Yordano Ventura #30 of the Kansas City Royals pitches against the Detroit Tigers during the first inning at Comerica Park on September 24, 2016 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)
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Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports provides an interesting window into how teams handle a player’s contract after he has died in an accident. It was reported on Sunday that Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic. He had three guaranteed years at a combined $19.25 million as well as two $12 million club options with a $1 million buyout each for the 2020-21 seasons.

What happens to that money? Well, that depends on the results of a toxicology report, Rosenthal explains. If it is revealed that Ventura was driving under the influence, payment to his estate can be nullified. The Royals may still choose to pay his estate some money as a gesture of good will, but they would be under no obligation to do so. However, if Ventura’s death was accidental and not caused by his driving under the influence, then his contract remains fully guaranteed and the Royals would have to pay it towards his estate. The Royals would be reimbursed by insurance for an as yet unknown portion of that contract.

The results of the toxicology report won’t be known for another three weeks, according to Royals GM Dayton Moore. Dominican Republic authorities said that there was no alcohol found at the scene.

Ventura’s situation is different than that of Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who died in a boating accident this past September. Fernandez was not under contract beyond 2016. He was also legally drunk and cocaine was found in his system after the accident. Still, it is unclear whether or not Fernandez was driving the boat. As a result, his estate will receive an accidental death payment of $1.05 million as well as $450,000 through the players’ standard benefits package, Rosenthal points out.