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.

Giancarlo Stanton dented the outfield wall in Marlins Park

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If we haven’t said it before, it bears repeating: When it comes to pure muscle mass and power, no major league player rivals the sheer force of Giancarlo Stanton. His record-setting 504-foot home run in 2016 has yet to be bested in the Statcast era (though it narrowly beat out Jake Arrieta‘s 503-foot blast in 2015, because baseball is weird), he broke the Dodgers’ outfield fence on an attempted catch at the wall last Sunday, and he carries 25 home runs that have each exceeded 460 feet.

It should come as little surprise, then, that when Stanton muscled his 12th home run of the season against the Angels on Friday night, it not only hit the batter’s eye, but left a visible dent in the wall:

Stanton’s mammoth shot put the Marlins on the board in the first inning, setting the stage for a four-run effort that gave the club an early lead. The home run measured a cool 462 feet, the slugger’s longest of the season. He still has a little ways to go to catch up to the 2017 season leader, Jake Lamb, whose 481-foot home run against the Rockies currently leads the pack.

The next item on Stanton’s bucket list? If we’re lucky, maybe something a little like this:

Bud Norris exits outing with right knee soreness

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Angels’ right-handed reliever Bud Norris made his 23rd appearance of the season on Friday, and after just three pitches, he was done for the night. He worked a 2-1 count to Marlins’ Dee Gordon in the eighth inning, then promptly exited the field after experiencing some tightness in his right knee. Neither Norris nor manager Mike Scioscia believe the injury is cause for major concern, and the 32-year-old right-hander admitted that it may have had something to do with his lack of stretching before he took the mound. For now, he’s day-to-day with right knee soreness, with the hope that the issue doesn’t escalate over the next few days.

While the Angels are lucky to have avoided serious injury, they’ll need Norris to pitch at 100% if they want to stay competitive within the AL West. They currently sit a full nine games behind the league-leading Astros, and haven’t been helping their cause after taking five losses in their last eight games. Friday’s 8-5 finale marked their third consecutive loss of the week.

 

When healthy, Norris has been one of the better arms in the Angels’ bullpen. Through 23 2/3 innings, he’s pitched to a 2.66 ERA, 3.4 BB/9 and an outstanding 11.8 SO/9 in 23 outings. The righty hasn’t allowed a single run in four straight appearances, recording three saves and helping the club clinch four wins in that span. This is his second setback of the year after sustaining a partial fingernail tear on his pitching hand during spring training.