Lance Berkman had his right knee drained for a fifth time and received a cortisone shot on Monday, according to Brian McTaggart of MLB.com. The 34-year-old first baseman underwent arthroscopic surgery last month, and after a series of recent setbacks, he doesn’t sound any closer to returning from the disabled list.
“My wife asked me that today and I think she’s tired of me moping around
the house,” Berkman said. “I have no idea [when I’ll return]. I really
wish I could tell you an accurate prediction of when I thought I would
be ready to go. It isn’t right this second, but I’m hopeful it will be
The Astros, who were dominated by Tim Lincecum on Monday and have been held to just four hits on Tuesday thus far, will sorely miss his presence in the middle of the lineup. They’ve already went to the lengths of moving Pedro Feliz over to first base just to roll the dice with rookie Chris Johnson at third.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.
Reds reliever Raisel Iglesias hasn’t appeared in a Grapefruit League game since March 14 and now we know why. He injured his right elbow and both hips falling in the shower three weeks ago, Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. He has had anti-inflammatory shots applied in both areas and he’ll be be shut down from pitching for a few more days.
Iglesias might not be ready for Opening Day, according to manager Bryan Price. Iglesias, however, thinks otherwise. He said, “I’m going to be OK. I’m probably going to throw one bullpen, and after that, mentally and physically, I’ll be ready to join the season and compete.”
Price said throughout the offseason that he intended to pick his closer according to the matchups rather than naming one official closer. As a result, this injury likely doesn’t change much except that Michael Lorenzen, Drew Storen, and Tony Cingrani may get a few more early season save chances if Iglesias doesn’t start the season on time.
Iglesias, 27, finished last season with a 2.53 ERA and an 83/26 K/BB ratio in 78 1/3 innings across five starts and 32 relief appearances.